The final results for China Singles Day 2018 are now available from different marketplaces in China. Singles Day transactions on AliBaba’s Tmall jumped 27% to reach $30.8 billion this year, while rival JD.com generated $23 billion over a 19-day time frame.
Including smaller players such as VIP.com, Amazon China, and others, it is estimated that $45.2 billion was generated on Singles Day alone, according to Syntun data.
The data is showing that cross-border eCommerce is becoming a bigger portion of general eCommerce sales as Chinese consumers continue to place a premium on quality. Since number of years already cross-border eCommerce is one area that is growing rapidly in China, as indicated by the 19,000 brands who participated in Singles Day on Tmall Global. Over 40% of consumers on Tmall purchased from international brands on the big day (1).
Cross-border eCommerce businesses sell quality goods that can’t be found in mainland China or are difficult to import through general trade. Consumers purchase products directly from overseas retailers because of quality & authenticity issues within China.
7.1% of Tmall’s sales for this year’s Singles Day came from cross-border eCommerce; for JD.com, this figure was 6.8% (2). Last year, these figures were 5.4% and 4.9%, respectively (3), indicating that cross-border e-commerce is becoming more and more important. The biggest increase came from Amazon China, which reported 19,0% share for cross-border eCommerce in 2018 Singles Day when last year figure was 7,3% according to Syntun.
Main cross-border eCommerce categories include cosmetics, health supplements, and mom & baby products such as milk powder and organic body lotion.
Key Takeaways from 2018 Singles Day
Growth of Singles Day sales is actually slowing on Tmall, but cross-border eCommerce is set to be one of the key growth areas.Smaller brands and retailers are looking for higher profit margins by using smaller platforms. They are also setting up their own eCommerce sites or launch low-cost stores on WeChat mini-programs.
Cross-border eCommerce continues to grow in importance. This year, over 40% of customers purchased international brands. For Tmall Global and JD Worldwide, 7.1% and 6.8% of transactions were derived from cross-border sales. Of personal care & cosmetics items, 13.7% of items sold were from cross-border transactions.
The Chinese cosmetics industry is evolving, as Chinese consumers are upgrading their makeup and cosmetics routines. HUDA BEAUTY eye shadow palette’s strong performance on Singles Day this year is one example. Brands and retailers that expand their content and KOL marketing with makeup video tutorials may have a better time connecting with customers.