[Singles’ Day 11/11] Preparing for China’s Biggest Online Shopping Day

When you think about love, you often imagine an affectionate couple or a smiling family. However, many people believe that you first have to love yourself in order to show that emotion for others.

And what better way to celebrate love for one’s self than by giving a selection of awesome gadgets and other gifts to number one on a magical date known as Singles’ Day.

What is Singles’ Day?

This idea may sound peculiar, but there are millions of people that celebrate Singles’ Day 11/11. This eclectic holiday is exactly what it sounds like – a celebration of the awesomeness and grandeur of the self.

Couples have Valentine’s day, and Zombies have Halloween, so online Chinese retailer Alibaba created this extravagant day to celebrate single people. The date in November 11th or 11/11 – a symbolic representation due to the four single ones that make up this date.

11/11 has become a major success as millions of users saturate online retailers and place billions of orders directed at themselves.

Singles’ Day By the Numbers

To put it in perspective, Singles’ Day is such a hit that it generates more sales than Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Thanksgiving combined. These three holidays span over a five-day period, during which US online sales accrued a stunning $19 billion.

But, 11/11 e-commerce sales for 2017 amassed more than 25 billion US dollars in one single day, averaging more than $1 billion spent per hour.

Singles's day stats

Singles’ Day or Black Friday: What’s bigger?

According to Bloomberg, “Alibaba’s Nov. 11 sales dwarf those of the busiest U.S. online shopping surge”.

How Singles' Day Became Biggest Shopping Spree Ever - Bloomberg 2018-11-02 10-52-19
Image by Bloomberg

Moreover, a lot of companies have gotten extremely creative with their campaigns. Last year, one of China’s largest retailers rolled out an 11-day promotion that started on Singles’ Day and, that single company made – wait for it – more than $19 billion in sales over that timespan.

And not just in China.

Topshop in 2016 saw its sales surge by over 900% compared to Singles Day in 2014. “These results clearly indicate how impactful this online calendar moment has become, and as a key focus market for the brand we see 11.11 as a great way to raise brand awareness and conversion in China,” says a Topshop spokesperson.

GEOs to Focus

Starting from 2016, China is trying to rebrand Singles’ Day for international markets as the “11.11 Global Shopping Festival” lasting three weeks. Was is successful?

Here are the top GEOs you can safely target: China, Southeast Asia, Australia, Germany, Belgium.

Which are the Most Popular Gifts?

Young adults are the most common demographic celebrating Singles’ Day, so the industries that see the highest sales peak tend to be:

  • Apparel
  • Home supplies
  • Shoes and footwear
  • Food
  • Electronics and gadgets
  • Skincare and beauty
  • Outdoor and sports items
  • Household appliances
  • Games and toys

Tips for Taking Advantage of Singles’ Day

All online retailers servicing China, parts of Asia, and other regions that may celebrate 11/11 need to invest time in building a dedicated strategy.

Besides generating a significant amount of revenue, you can start tracking your yearly performance. This will give you valuable insights, which will help you launch a better campaign next year and teach you a lot about your audience.

In order to fully embrace Singles’ Day, you should:

Set a Theme Across Your Marketing Campaign

Singletons across Asia and the world are eager to get something nice for the person in the mirror. Set an obvious theme and let all of your potential customers that you’re celebrating it big as well!

Digital advertising trends in China
Read more: Digital advertising trends in China

Employ Rich Media Ads

The Asian market is used to traditional and static forms of advertising. Rich media ad formats such as gifs tend to have better engagement, especially during this time of year.

Focus on Mobile Social Media

China is different from other big markets because it’s already dominated by mobile social media. Affordable smartphones and the different platforms available in Asia allow you to reach potential singles with social media campaign more efficiently.

Design a Flexible Campaign

The Asian market is also quite unpredictable, more so than other large regions. You should create a flexible campaign that takes into account your audience’s most important behaviors.

singlesday-

Be Fearless with Your Branding

One of the reasons Singles’ Day is such a big success is that it’s very outlandish and straight up eccentric. The concept itself is still perplexing to some, but this has encouraged a huge number of people to join the merrymaking.

Similarly, most companies that successfully launch an 11/11 campaign are fearless with their branding. Flashy colors, fun characters, and complex promotions are all favorites in the Asian market, so don’t be shy with your efforts.

Make sure everyone know you are getting your singles love on!

Tools to Try

  1. Push Notifications – if you out of time and you urgently need to launch an ad campaign, Push notifications are your choice. It’s especially useful because you don’t have to create audiences – simply select “High” activity group and get the most engaged audience.
  2. Popunder – is an ad format if you are looking for a massive coverage or planning to create a custom audience for the retargeting campaign.
  3. Retargeting – building a sales funnel? Or have new offers to share? Launch a Singles’ Day unique retargeting campaign!

Check out our blog and our Telegram chat for more information on Singles’ Day and other major ecommerce holidays you should look out for.

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