China's 11.11 Online Shopping Festival Sets New Records
China's 11.11 Shopping Festival, the biggest online shopping day of the year in the world, is already setting new records.
The Shopping Festival originated five years ago when Alibaba offered promotions on its many e-commerce sites on China's unofficial 'Singles' Day' holiday. Single bargain hunters are not the only ones taking advantage of the deals, though.
Single and married Chinese consumers are expected to spend $5 billion Monday, spending more online today than American consumers will on Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined. According to the Xinhua News Agency, Alibaba processed $3.1 billion in transactions last year.
Eric Wong, managing director for Greater China at Possible, commented, "Chinese people love to shop. If you have the right excuse and the right occasion, they will spend money. One of the tactics to get people to buy is to create a more festive occasion."
According to Alibaba, the first six minutes of transactions topped one billion yuan, or $160 million. In 2012, in took 37 minutes to reach one billion yuan and Tmall expects this growth to continue as China's internet penetration rate in only at 45 percent. Xiaomi and Bestseller were two of the first companies to generate 100 million yuan in sales this morning.
International marketing companies are also using Tmall to promote Singles' Day deals.
Adidas, Proctor & Gamble (NYSE: PG), Nike (NYSE: NKE), Unilever (NYSE: UN) and Samsung (OTC: SSNLF) are a few who are reaching Chinese consumers today. Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) will take part in Singles' Day for the first time this year.
Vice President of Greater China at Microsoft Isaiah Cheung noted, "On our website, traffic tripled in the last five days, and we're hoping to see a month's worth of sales happening in one single day."
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