Latest e-commerce trends influencing China

By Natasha Spencer

- Last updated on GMT

Latest e-commerce trends influencing China

Related tags Electronic commerce

At eTail Asia 2017, Ann Wang, General Manager of Performance Advertising Solution, Online Media Group, Tencent, revealed how Chinese brands can succeed amid the country’s online market environment and evolving consumer behaviours.

Consumption upgrade

The event, which brings together senior e-commerce and multichannel directors of leading retailers and took place on 9th March 2017 in Singapore, saw Wang advise e-commerce companies how to succeed in the Chinese marketplace as they explore innovative online marketing strategies.

In the dynamic Chinese market, which is famed for its popular colour cosmetics sector and specifically its lip care segment, 90% of internet users access sites via smartphone, with over 75% also shopping online via their smartphone.

Overseas online shopping has led to considerable growth. Statistics show that in 2016, the total volume of Chinese cross-border online shopping hit $85.7 bn (€79.7 bn) and cross-border online shoppers grew 46% in this period.

Quality communications

Chinese consumers favour platforms that enable high-quality social interactions, the ongoing delivery of live content and sophisticated data capabilities.

Beauty e-tailers should explore similar strategies that incorporate social media promotion, blogs that reveal both industry and company updates, and metrics that measure the results of these efforts to appeal to Chinese consumers.

Mary Meeker's Internet Trends 2016 also revealed that mobile users in China spend more than 55% of their online time on Tencent platforms, including QQ, Qzone, WeChat, and Tencent News, which combine all of these promotional activities.

Through advertising, this business model aims to prioritise open and connected data that indicates brand attitudes and pairs this knowledge with consumer behaviour and sales.

Generating success

To succeed in “the increasingly dynamic China market”​, Wang emphasises that there are a number of steps that Chinese brands should take to achieve growth online.

  • Prioritising mobile

As there are a variety of tools available to brands’ disposal, cosmetics companies should prioritise mobile users within their ecosystem.

To encourage users to choose and engage with their brand online via mobile, beauty names should invest in online e-commerce platform solutions, payment services and customer management.

  • Integrated marketing approach

Beauty brands would benefit from selecting fully integrated platforms that pair brand advertising and performance advertising.

Tencent adopted this approach by partnering with a leading cosmetics label to create its blockbuster IP. The duo researched its market, created its self-produced series "Revive", utilised the power of celebrity endorsement and actively encouraged users to try the product range.

Connecting the online brand with offline celebrity meet-up sessions, the team combined a variety of successful and on-trend strategic moves to help its Tmall store's daily sales volume increase by 400%.

In addition, online marketing can maximise traffic in brick-and-mortar shops to strengthen brand identity and connect it across multiple channels.

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