Over 87% of consumers plan to participate in 2015’s “Double 11” shopping holiday
with 56% saying they will spend more than in 2014.
SHANGHAI – A recent Nielsen study on “Double 11” or “Single’s Day” (November 11th) suggests that overall participation and spending by consumers will increase compared with previous years. When asked about their intent to participate in “Double 11” activities in 2015, 87% of respondents said they planned to take part. The study was conducted from October 16th to October 21st, 2015.
“The creation of online shopping holidays by online retailers in China has been an enormous success and a key driver for e-Commerce sales in recent years. Chinese consumers are living in a super-connected world where the convenience of online shopping has become the norm and we expect this growth trend to continue,” said Yan Xuan, President of Nielsen Greater China. “Online shopping holidays are a massive opportunity for retailers and brands who can offer consumers attractive promotions.”
AWARENESS AND SPENDING ON MAJOR SHOPPING HOLIDAYS CONTINUES TO RISE
In recent years, online retailers like Taobao, Tmall, and Jingdong have put significant resources into promoting shopping holidays like “Double 11.” These efforts continue to yield results, as overall awareness about online shopping holidays amongst internet users rose from 95% in 2014 to 100% in 2015. Increased awareness is primarily contributed by the major shopping holidays, such as “Double 11,” Taobao and Tmall’s “Double 12,” and Jingdong’s “618 Holiday”.
As for expected spending, more than half of consumers (56%) said that they will spend more on “Double 11” this year compared to 2014. One third (33%) of consumers said they are likely to spend a similar amount as last year and only 6% plan to spend less. The average expected spend amongst all respondents in 2015 is RMB 1,761, an increase of RMB 321 (22%) compared with 2014.
“It’s not a huge surprise that consumers are planning to spend more during this year’s ‘Double 11.’ Income levels and internet penetration continue to rise throughout China, so this is a natural progression. What’s important for retailers and brands to consider is how to best align digital advertising, promotional strategies and product offerings in order to maximize the opportunity of these shopping holidays,” noted Yan Xuan.
PRE-HOLIDAY ACTIVITIES AND PROMOTIONS ARE FURTHER DRIVING CONSUMPTION
While the holidays themselves were the focus of consumers’ online shopping behavior in previous years, online retailers and brands are now putting more effort into promoting pre-event activities. These activities include encouraging users to add products into an online shopping cart beforehand or obtain coupons to be used during the holiday. Out of the 87% of internet users that say they will participate in this year’s “Double 11”, more than two-thirds (68%) say they have already begun paying attention to or participating in “Double 11” activities or promotions. Over 90% of respondents said they intend to place items in their online carts before the holiday on November 11th.
In regards to the most attractive types of promotions for consumers, percentage discounts for single products is most popular, with 52% of respondents say they prefer or accept this type of promotion. Second most preferred (48%) is a format where a set RMB discount is given once a total value amount is purchased, such as “spend RMB 500, get RMB 100 off.”
In contrast to the attractiveness of promotions, consumers also shared key pain points or areas where they would like to see improvement based on previous “Double 11” experience. The number one issue is slower shipping and delivery times, mentioned by 62% of respondents. Consumers also had a problem with products quickly selling out (58%) and a perception that retailers falsely raise prices beforehand, only to drop them on the day of the shopping event (47%).
CONSUMERS ARE REALIGNING PLANNED PURCHASES WITH DOUBLE 11
With the advent of “Double 11,” consumers are now rescheduling planned purchases to fall in line with the holiday. Approximately 87% of respondents say that they will either delay or move forward planned purchases in order to take advantage of “Double 11” promotions, an increase of 4 percentage points versus 2014.
Clothing and footwear remains the most popular category. Out of consumers that plan to delay purchases until “Double 11,” 60% say they will delay clothing purchases, which contrasts with the 28% that say they will put off tech and electronic purchases, the second most popular category.
THE GROWTH OF MOBILE INTERNET OFFERS OPPORTUNITY TO ENGAGE
China’s overall trend towards mobile internet can also be observed by the survey. In 2014, around half (52%) of respondents said they would shop on both a PC and mobile, 40% said PC only, and 4% said mobile phone or tablet only. This year, 59% said they would shop on both PC and mobile; PC only users dropped 10 percentage points to 30%, while mobile only shoppers increased 6 percentage points to 10%.
Following this shift towards mobile, mobile friendly social media is a key channel for consumers who want to share their purchase choices with others. Wechat is the clear favorite, with more than two-thirds (67%) of respondents saying they would consider the platform to share purchase decisions. QQ Space (40%) and Weibo (28%) came in at second and third.
“In 2014, the percentage of users that access the internet via mobile surpassed PC for the first time, and we are seeing this shift continue throughout China. Businesses in China have a lot of decisions to make in terms of how they engage their customers online. The first step to optimizing digital strategy is measuring the consumer, then adjusting to maximize ROI and drive growth as mobile continues to emerge,” said Yan Xuan.
CONSUMERS ARE GOING CROSS-BORDER
As Chinese consumers become increasingly sophisticated, their desire for high quality and niche products is also rising. In line with this trend, more and more consumers are turning to cross-border and overseas purchasing for these types of products. Out of respondents who plan to participate in 2015’s “Double 11,” three-out-of-five (60%) say that they will purchase or consider purchasing overseas products. The survey also suggests that as income levels rise, consumer consideration for overseas products also increases. Over two-thirds (68%) of respondents whose average household income is over RMB 20,000 plan to purchase cross-border goods on “Double 11.”
“As consumer demand and spending power in China rises, it’s clear that shopping holidays like “Double 11” will add incremental sales for businesses in China. However, the organizations that will have the greatest success from these events will be those that execute effectively on rising trends like mobile, targeted digital promotions, and cross-border purchasing to drive engagement with consumers,” said Yan Xuan.
ABOUT THE NIELSEN CHINA DOUBLE 11 SURVEY
The Nielsen China “Double 11” and Survey polled over 1,000 internet users in China to understand consumer attitudes, sentiments, and purchase intent in regards to online shopping holidays.
Nielsen N.V. (NYSE: NLSN) is a global performance management company that provides a comprehensive understanding of what consumers Watch and Buy. Nielsen’s Watch segment provides media and advertising clients with Total Audience measurement services across all devices where content—video, audio and text—is consumed. The Buy segment offers consumer packaged goods manufacturers and retailers the industry’s only global view of retail performance measurement. By integrating information from its Watch and Buy segments and other data sources, Nielsen provides its clients with both world-class measurement as well as analytics that help improve performance. Nielsen, an S&P 500 company, has operations in over 100 countries that cover more than 90% of the world’s population. For more information, visit www.nielsen.com.
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