Singles aren’t alone in China. Singles Day, a manufactured holiday for online shopping in China akin to Cyber Monday, drew in 82 percent of shoppers who spent an average of 1,577 yuan ($247 USD) on Nov. 11.
In 2009, Alibaba challenged singletons to shop online on the loneliest day of the calendar: 11/11. In 2014, Singles Day sales on Alibaba’s Tmall eclipsed the total sum of Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined, according to AdMaster’s 2015 Singles’ Day Report.
This year, Alibaba remains the holiday’s top retailer with 91.2 billion yuan ($14.3 billion) in revenue on Tmall, a growth of 60 percent from 2014. It was followed closely by JD.com, where the average shopper spent 2,175 yuan ($341), 32 percent more than 1,643 yuan per capita ($258) on Tmall.
Both companies launched innovative marketing campaigns. Alibaba’s four-hour televised gala on Hunan TV allowed online shoppers to interact with the show through their smartphone for coupons. In a similar practice, JD.com, together with one of China’s most viewed reality talent TV shows, Voice of China, broadcasted its Double 11 Party half an hour ahead of its big rival. About 50 percent of AdMaster poll responders watched Alibaba’s show and about 17 percent watched JD.com’s televised party.
“Alibaba, because of its history with the event, maintained its leadership and momentum, but JD.com and other key e-commerce platforms are also making a great deal of efforts to leverage the festival. The competition and dynamics between Alibaba and JD.com and other e-commerce players are important for a healthier development of China’s e-commerce market in the long run,” said Maggie Wang, Vice President, Commercial Strategy, AdMaster.
Alibaba launched its pre-order service in 2014, a purchase method that allows consumers to pay a deposit in advance. AdMaster’s survey shows that 16 percent more shoppers used that service this year.
“The development of Internet financing and all these innovative payment methods makes it possible for a smooth, simple and convenient online shopping experience, and make e-commerce a really powerful and solid sales channel,” said Wang.