The largest eCommerce shopping day in the world is hosted by the Chinese company Alibaba.
Alibaba’s Singles’ Day sales were up 32% from 2015 and 82% of consumers made purchases on mobile devices, reports Internet Retailer. (Alibaba is the world’s biggest online commerce company.)
And these numbers have U.S. merchants wondering what the Chinese are doing to achieve such success.
Why Did Singles’ Day eCommerce Sales Skyrocket?
Like Black Friday in the U.S., massive discounts motivate consumers to buy on Singles’ Day.
Entertainment is a big factor, too. Alibaba hired Hollywood producer, David Hill, to produce a four-hour nationally televised gala on Nov. 10, which led to a midnight Singles’ Day Kick-off. The gala featured big-name celebrities, like Kobe Bryant and Scarlett Johansson, and pop band OneRepublic.
The gala also aired online. So those viewing from a computer or mobile device could interact with the event to receive coupons or win clothing. The more they clicked, the more likely they were to win.
Additionally, Alibaba invited “influencers” to post product recommendations on Weibo, the Chinese social network. Weibo reported that posts with the Singles’ Day tag were viewed more than 1.2 billion times.
Some brands live-streamed on Alibaba’s website to introduce their brands and get customer feedback in real time.
What about the Mobile Payments Uptick?
There are a few factors that play into China’s mobile payments surge. And millennials are largely driving this trend.
Firstly, China is home to the largest and fastest-growing mobile payments market in the world, reports eMarketer. Plus, Chinese consumers aren’t as attached to credit cards as Americans. So it’s easier for them to adopt digital payment options.
Some Chinese companies are embedding mobile payment options into services that consumers already use. Tencent, for example, allows consumers to make mobile transactions through its social network, WeChat, reports pymnts.com.
In Summary: The U.S. Has Room to Grow
While the U.S. has made significant headway when it comes to adopting the Internet shopping movement, statistics show that American consumers are still weary of mobile payments.
There are a few things U.S. retailers can do, however, to make headway in the mobile payments space. These include allocating more promotional dollars toward mobile advertising, making it easier to pay on mobile and developing creative marketing strategies – to name a few.
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