Single's Day generates US$25.4 billion
Alibaba has said it that it recorded sales of 168.3 billion yuan on Single's Day, up by 39 per cent on the 120.7 billion yuan it generated last year from the 24 hour shopping event. Single's Day dwarfs shopping events like Black Friday in the US and looks set to continue to grow as increasing numbers of Chinese shoppers are attracted by the discounts on offer and the razzamataz aurrounding the event. As a result an estimated 5 billion orders are expected to ship to customers over the next few days, a number which is staggering when compared with the UK's parcel traffic.
Alibaba had turned 100,000 bricks & mortar stores around China into "smart stores" for the Single's Day event to enable customers to look at the goods and then place orders whilst in-store. This it says helped to bridge the gap between those who trust online channels implicitly and those who are more sceptical. Discounts on offer are understood to have been less generous this year but this clearly had no impact on sales.
"This is a big event for China, for the Chinese economy," said Joseph Tsai, co-founder and chairman of Alibaba. "On Singles Day, shopping is a sport, it is entertainment." Adding that over 300 million middle-class customers were helping to drive online sales and that this number would grow.