New Shopping Trends

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Kuala Lumpur, June 27: Alibaba’s recently concluded the 6.18 Mid-Year Shopping Festival. This year, the 6.18 Mid-Year Shopping Festival saw participation by more than 260,000 brands.
“Our 6.18 campaign this year continued to achieve positive year-over-year  GMV growth,” Trudy Dai, President of Core Domestic E-commerce, Alibaba Group said.
“We are deeply grateful to all the merchants and their commitment to making this 6.18 a success.”
The 6:18 shopping festival was started in 1998 to commemorate the anniversary of one of the top two biggest e-commerce companies in China which fall on June 18.
The company was founded by Chinese Internet entrepreneur Liu Qiangdong with its retail platform went online in 2004.
There were nearly 100 best sellers that brought in a turnover of over RMB100  million, nearly 2,300 items with a turnover of over RMB10 million, and over 30,000 items with  RMB1 million in turnover.
In response to a challenging environment, business units across the Alibaba Ecosystem such as Taobao, Tmall and Cainiao rolled out extensive merchant support measures across its platforms that were well-received by merchants.
“Alibaba’s Cainiao helped us prevent some of the pandemic-induced supply chain disruptions when the virus hit Hong Kong and Shanghai.
“It enabled us to deliver goods to our consumers in a timely manner,” Rachel Gu, Vice President of Marketing at GoLong, who is responsible for the China operations of Japanese beauty brand Bb LABORATORIES said.
A number of fresh consumption trends emerged during the 6.18 Mid-Year Shopping Festival, which presented exciting opportunities for brands and merchants in China and abroad. Some fun facts from this year’s shopping trends include: 

Trend One: New Hobbies Embraced by Young Chinese Consumers: Camping and  Fishing 

  • Fishing is gaining popularity among young Chinese consumers as a new hobby. In the last 12  months, three million consumers – born after 1995 – purchased fishing equipment on Taobao and Tmall. During the first check-out period of this year’s 6.18 campaign, the sales of fishing equipment increased by nearly 50 per cent year-on-year. In particular, high-end lure fishing equipment is a favoured product of members of 88VIP, Alibaba’s paid premium customer-loyalty program. 
  • Young consumers also favour camping, an activity complementary to lure fishing. During the first 6.18 check-out period, the sales of camping-related products tripled year-over-year on Tmall. Consumers purchased the whole set of camping items, including tents,  canopies, folding tables, folding chairs, moisture-proof mats, and camping carts. Outdoor dining utensils such as windproof stoves and full sets of outdoor appliances were also very popular. 

Trend Two: From Niche to Trendy, Skateboarding Becomes an Outdoor Sports Category  with High Growth Potential 

  • Skateboarding made its Olympic debut at the Summer Games Tokyo 2020, lending it legitimacy and setting off a tidal wave of interest among Chinese consumers that continues to build. During the first shopping window of this year’s 6.18 check-out period,  the sales of the skateboard category on Tmall increased by 290 per cent YoY. 
  • Demand for imported skateboards also increased. From the beginning of this year to mid-June, the sales of imported skateboards recorded a three-digit YoY increase on Tmall  Global, Alibaba’s cross-border e-commerce platform for imported products. 

Trend Three: Increasing Popularity of Men’s Personal Care Products 

  • Sunscreen and skin care are no longer just for women. During the first shopping window of the 6.18 campaign on Tmall, the sales for the male grooming and shaving category surged by more than 20 times YoY. In addition, men’s special styling, primer and foundation products are also favoured by consumers. 
  • During the same period, the supply and sales of men’s UV protection clothing increased significantly, with the number of transactions soaring by 50 per cent YoY, making it the most popular item in the outdoor apparel category.  
Pet supplies are big businesses. Image supplied.

Trend Four: Growing Demand for Pet Smart Devices and Pet Clothing 

  • Smart pet products were a hit during the 6.18 campaign, and the sales increased most rapidly among millennial and Gen-Z consumers in China who are no longer satisfied with keeping their pets well-fed. During the first shopping window, sales of smart devices for pets including companion robots, intelligent pet bowls and smart cat litter boxes increased by nearly 150 per cent YoY. Sales of pet smart toys increased by nearly 130 times YoY. 
  • Pet clothing has also been popular among consumers. During the first check-out window of the 6.18 campaign, the search volume for cat and dog summer clothing increased by nearly 40 per cent YoY, and the search volume for pet helmets increased by more than 3 times YoY. Younger consumers are also investing in wigs, coats and booties for their pets and keeping them healthy with dietary supplements. 

Trend Five: Cross-category and Cross-scenario Consumption  

  • Diversifying consumer demand is creating more cross-category and cross-scenario consumer products, unlocking the new growth engine for merchants. Tmall Innovation  Center (TMIC), Alibaba’s product development arm, cooperated with various merchants to create a number of cross-category and cross-scenario products specifically for the  China market, which were put into the market during the 6.18 Mid-Year Shopping Festival.  
  • Collaborating with TMIC, Chinese wellness retailer Breo tapped into the growing consumer demand for eye protection devices. Breo hopes that its products can protect the skin around the eyes in addition to having an eye-protecting function. Bearing the two goals in mind, Breo and TMIC co-developed the new product and launched it during the 6.18 Mid-Year Shopping Festival. 

Trend Six: New Luxury Products Boom on Tmall Luxury Pavilion  

  • This year, more than 200 luxury brands including LVMH, Kering, Chanel, Hermès and  Richemont participated in the 6.18 Mid-Year Shopping Festival. Collectively, they launched more than 20,000 new products. The growing demand for new products for the spring/summer season was particularly noteworthy. 
  • More than 300 new products were sold on the first day of the pre-sale. The Italian fashion label Max Mara participated in the 6.18 Mid-Year Shopping Festival for the first time and recorded a sales revenue of over RMB1 million in two minutes during the first check-out window. Prada’s first-hour sales were well over three figures compared to the first-hour sales from last year. 

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