LIVE BLOG: 2021 Singles‘ Day Global Shopping Festival Key Findings

by Azoya

With November having started, the countdown to this year's Singles Day has officially begun. Singles Day is the biggest online shopping festival of the year. And every year, it breaks last year's sales records. According to Alizila, this year marks the largest Festival to date, with a record 290,000 brands participating - including Hermes and Saint Laurent joining for the first time.

As Alibaba has already kicked off its pre-sale period for Singles Day on October 20, we saw some updates coming up in this year's Singles Day. Let's take a look at this live blog and see what happened.

(November 15, 2021) This Year Singles Day Mega-Sale Closes on a High Note

With the two-week shopping blitz already finished, merchants are turning their minds to 11.11 next year.

We captured some key findings during the Singles’ Day campaign period and nicely packaged them together on this live blog.

Thank you for your following and see you again next year!

(November 12, 2021) JD Singles' Day Sales Data

According to JD official data, the final turnover this year exceeded 349.1 billion yuan ($54.6 billion). 31 brand sales exceeded 1 billion, 43,276 business turnover increased by more than 200% year on year; The number of small and medium-sized brands increased by more than 4 times.

京东双十一.png

This Singles Day has been joined by the most merchants and brands in JD’s history, especially in the fashion category. Over 6,000 new apparel brands joined JD’s Singles Day this year, such as Victoria’s Secret, Peace Bird and Bosideng. In the first 10 minutes after the final sales spike started at 8 pm on Nov. 10, sales of 600 apparel brands increased 8 times YOY. Among the consumers of apparel products, the number of Gen-Z consumers was 3 times that of last year. Transaction volume of luxury products in the first 10 minutes increased 180% YOY.[8]

Pet consumption continues to boom. Transaction volume of nutrition products for pets increased 12 times in the first 10 minutes.

(November 12, 2021) Alibaba Singles' Day Just Set A New Record

As the clock strikes midnight, Alibaba Group has officially concluded its thirteenth-annual 11.11 Global Shopping Festival with a record-breaking RMB540.3 billion (US$84.54 billion) in gross merchandise volume.While 11.11 already dwarfs all other retail events on earth, this year was by far its largest edition to date, bringing together at least 900 million Chinese consumers and 290,000 brands. More than 200 brands took part via Tmall Luxury Pavilion, Alibaba’s platform for high-end brands, including Saint Laurent, Max Mara, Thom Browne and Van Cleef & Arpels for the first time.[7]

 

天猫双11.jpg

According to Alizila, there are about two-thirds of the 290,000 merchants participating in 11.11 this year are small and medium-sized enterprises, industrial firms and new brands. About 70,000 of these merchants are joining the annual sales event for the first time.

Penetration in lower-tier cities further increased. According to Bain’s report, this year’s 11.11 will see more first-time 11.11 participants from Tier 3, 4 and 5 cities than from larger cities.

Lower-tier cities in China are the next big drivers of growth, Alibaba market data shows. When 11.11 sales opened on Nov. 1-3, spending in lower-tier cities and rural areas increased by nearly 25% year-over-year. The number of luxury goods buyers in smaller cities also grew by nearly 50%.

(November 11, 2021) Singles' Day Last Day: Tmall And JD Publish Sales Report

During last night, the Singles’ Day shopping festival reached its final climax. E-commerce platforms such as JD.com and Alibaba release their sales data.

According to data released by Tmall, as of 0:45 on November 11, 2021, there have been 411 small and midsized brands with more than RMB1 million in GMV during last year’s 11.11 saw their sales cross RMB10 million this year. 

天猫.jpg

Unlike Tmall, the final climax of JD's Singles' Day started at 8pm on November 10.

Just after 8pm on the 10th, JD home appliance turnover broke 2 billion in 5 minutes. Entertainment TVs, washing machines, air conditioners and floor scrubbers all grew by more than 5 times YOY. High-end laptop turnover grew 260% YOY, and baby cooking oil and condiments turnover grew 30 times YOY.

JD data shows that in the 4 hours from 8pm on the 10th to 0pm on the 11th, the TOP5 categories of turnover are cell phones, refrigerators, flat screen TVs, washing machines and air conditioners; the TOP5 categories of sales are milk and dairy products, toilet paper, shampoo, cooking oil and cookies and cakes.

During JD Singles’ Day, the number of small and midsized brands increased by more than 4 times. In the first 4 hours, the overall turnover of JD Worldwide increased 11 times YOY, and nearly 1,000 imported brands increased more than 100% YOY. Among them, Shiseido brand turnover increased by 26 times YOY.

(November 10, 2021) Cosmetics Sample Has A New Trend During the Singles' Day

Tmall opens a specific channel named Tmall U Xian (天猫U先), in which consumers can apply for a sample from many big brands at a meager price.

According to data from Tmall U Xian, the supply of SKU samples during Singles’ Day is 3 times as usual, and the number of new products increases by 20%. Samples are forming a new interactive relationship between new products, consumers, and brands.

小样.jpg

The cosmetics sample playing an important role in the Chinese beauty industry. For brands, handing out samples is an effective way to drive traffic and help brands quickly expand their target audience. For consumers, especially young consumers, buying samples can satisfy their curiosity for high-end beauty brands on a low budget and is easy to make a transaction decision.

Since 2018, Shiseido has distributed more than 2.3 million samples on Tmall U Xian. The conversion rate of consumer to purchase full size after used samples are reach 4%. Shiseido plans to distribute 1 million samples during Singles’ Day this year.

(November 9, 2021) China Secondhand Luxury Market Are Booming

More than 3 million consumers visited Tmall Global vintage stores during Singles' Day this year, with sales doubling compared to 618 shopping festival period.

brand off.jpg

Brand Off X Tmall Global

According to “China Second-hand Luxury Market Development Research Report 2020”, the scale of China's second-hand luxury market only accounts for 5% of the size of the domestic luxury industry, far lower than the 20%-30% of the United States, Japan and other countries, indicating a huge market space. 

For Japan's vintage luxury stores, the Chinese market has huge potential. The change of the consumption concept of the emerging population, as well as the impact of the epidemic, are accelerating the rise of vintage luxury consumption in China.

(November 8, 2021) Men's Personal Care Market Is Growing

On this year's Singles Day, men's beauty and men's body care these two categories, saw more than triple-digit growth on Tmall. Men's personal care has also become a new consumer category.

男士护理.jpg

According to Allied Market Research, the global men personal care market size was valued at $124.8 billion in 2020, and is projected to reach $276.9 billion by 2030, registering a CAGR of 8.6% from 2021 to 2030.[6]

Personal care products, while popular with consumers of all ages, have grown in popularity among young people in recent years. Men personal care products are in high demand in the global men personal care market due to rise in disposable income, increase in trend of online shopping, and the development of organized retail.

Consumer demand is the best productivity. Changes in living standards and lifestyles will also give birth to more new consumer modules.

(November 5, 2021) Brand Marketing Strategy For Singles's Day

In the recent years of shopping festivals, the marketing form of "Influencer’s content marketing + livestreaming e-commerce with goods" has become the mainstream communication form. According to the report of Weiboyi[5], from the perspective of the overall trend of brand Influencers' marketing in the shopping festival, the following findings are observed:

•  Brands generally laid out Influencer’s marketing two months before an e-commerce event. The middle and late September is the time for brands to launch singles' Day advertisements intensively. 15 September - 31 September and 9 October - 31 October are two high growth periods for Influencer’s advertising. 

• In terms of content marketing, brands prefer to do product lists form of seeding. During the shopping festival, brands will collaborate with Influencers to publish "must-buy lists" and "best-selling lists", which will be easier to guide consumers and stimulate their consumption.

•  In terms of industry categories, beauty and daily cosmetics accounted for the largest share. In terms of platform selection, Little Red Book grew significantly, with a 32% increase in share.

Top 5 platform.png

(November 3, 2021) Tmall Singles' Day Sales Boomed

In the first hour of 1 November, the turnover of more than 2,600 brands exceeded that of the entire day last year. Among them, men's care, perfume, and aromatherapy categories are also growing fast, one hour doubled compared to last year.

sales boomed.jpg

Strong consumption has also left some brands facing problems. For example, CATLINK, a brand in the pet sector, believes that the biggest problem with participating in this year's Singles’ Day was the product sold out very quickly; CATLINK's turnover in the eighth minute exceeded that of the entire day last year.

This also means that merchants & brands must make inventory plans before participating in large shopping festivals, and determine the goods likely to sell well and how many goods should be stocked in advance.

According to “AlixPartners' 2021 Singles’ Day Forecast Report”, half of the consumers surveyed expect to spend more than RMB 3,000 on Singles’ Day this year. Ebrun's “2021 Brand Enterprise Singles’ Day Insight Report” shows, more than half of the brand expected this year's Singles’ Day transaction over 10 million yuan, of which the estimated transaction of more than 100 million yuan accounted for 13.16%.[4]

(November 1, 2021) Tmall Helps People With Disabilities Buy Single Shoes

This news was released by alizila.

Alibaba Group’s online marketplace Tmall launched a “One Shoe Program”, making it easier for people with physical disabilities to buy footwear.

one shoe program.jpeg

Source: Alizila

Launched ahead of the 11.11 Global Shopping Festival, consumers can now buy one shoe for half the price of a pair on participating brands’ Tmall flagship stores.

The program seeks to provide a more inclusive shopping experience for people with disabilities. There are around 85 million people with disabilities in China, according to China Disabled Persons’ Federation. 

Seven big-name brands are taking part in the program, including Sketchers, Reebok and ECCO. 

Reebok said it adjusted its design, supply chain and inventory levels to better serve the demands of people with disabilities. “It is not as simple as selling two shoes separately,” said a brand representative from Reebok in a statement. He added that offline retailers have limited capacity to serve people with special needs, but moving sales online makes it much more accessible. 

The “One Shoe Program” is part of Alibaba’s efforts to make the marketplace more inclusive to consumers, a central theme of this year’s 11.11 Global Shopping Festival.

(October 28, 2021) Tmall Launched “Shopping Cart Sharing” Feature To Enhance User Interaction

Starting from October 27, Taobao’s shopping cart products can be shared with one click, and one shake feature can also be used to share the cart with friends face-to-face offline. Users who click on the shopping cart page of the Taobao APP can see the entrance of the shared shopping cart.

“Shopping Cart Sharing” Feature.png

Some netizens said that Taobao "shopping cart sharing" can make it easier for them to share the Singles’ Day shopping cart list with their friends. It is much more convenient than sending the items in the shopping cart one by one, saving a lot of trouble at the same time. It can also drive the popularity of certain commodities. In general, "shopping cart sharing" is a feature that is beneficial to merchants and users and can improves the interactivity between users.

In addition to friends, shopping carts of celebrities and influencers can also be seen on the Taobao APP during Singles’ Day, and fans can one-click copy shopping cart to buy the same products. 

During Singles’ Day, users who share the shopping cart can also have the opportunity that Taobao will help you pay for everything in the shopping cart.

(October 27, 2021) More Luxury Brands and New Brands Participate

According to Alizila, this year Single’s Day with more than 200 luxury and designer brands are participating – including Hermes and Saint Laurent joining for the first time.

爱马仕.png

Singles' Day presents an opportunity for new product launches, to help brands drive consumer excitement and boost sales. This year's Singles' Day attracted more than 29,000 overseas brands from 87 countries and regions to participate. Among them, more than 2800 new overseas brands participated in Singles' Day for the first time, bringing millions of imported new products.[3]

Many new overseas brands have taken Tmall Global as the first stop to introduce and incubate "new products" in recent years, and develop or customize new products based on the needs of Chinese consumers.

As the first country to recover from the pandemic, China has become one of the most important markets for global brands seeking growth. L’Oréal group has maintained a high growth rate in China over the past two years, with sales in the third quarter up 42.8% compared with the same period in 2019, according to its latest Q3 financial results. And Tmall Global has become an important platform for overseas brands to tap growth and successfully incubate new products.

(October 26, 2021) Brand - Owned Livestreaming Outbreak

While the top anchors & Influencers lead the market share of livestreaming e-commerce, brands' owned livestreaming is rising fast and will maintain high growth in the foreseeable range.

自播.png

Source: Taobao Brands Own Livestreaming Screenshot

One reason is that in the process of cooperation with anchors', the cost for one slot, commission, and other factors will affect the profit margin of the merchant and cannot form their own private traffic. Another reason is that brands' owned livestreaming has become the standard for merchants. This form can ensure control over the live content, which is the most direct way for the long-term value of the brand and the growth of the private domain.

Since last year, merchants' attention has been increasingly focused on this emerging marketing area. According to statistics, during Tmall Singles' Day last year, the number of online merchants and livestreaming in the industry more than tripled. Also, the transaction value increased 10 times compared to the same period last year.[2] After the catalysis of Singles' Day, brand-owned livestreaming has become a rising trend in all major platforms.

During this year's Singles' Day pre-sale, the number of brand-owned livestreaming sessions and their length were more than the daily livestreaming. Even Estee Lauder also arranged a 24-hour non-stop livestreaming throughout the day, the total number of views in its official livestreaming room exceeded 6.18 million. On the merchants' official livestreaming room, brands have also added the second kill, red envelope rain, coupons, lucky draw and other forms.

In terms of sales, many brands have also broken records. According to the "Wshang" report, one hour after kicks off this year's Singles' Day pre-sale, many brands' sales exceeded the whole day of last year's pre-sale and even the whole cycle of Singles' Day. Like the hyaluronic acid brand QuadHA and skincare brand Zhuben. Many brands have achieved new sales growth under the brand-owned livestreaming.

(October 23, 2021) Tmall Launched "Senior Mode", Silver-Hair Economy Gets Attention

老年专场.jpeg

Source: WShang

According to iiMedia Research Group, China’s “silver economy” already worth 3.7 trillion yuan ($570 billion) in 2018 and expected to reach 5.7 trillion yuan ($880 billion) by the end of 2021. Alibaba has spotted the growing e-commerce opportunity and launched Senior Mode this year, Singles’ Day, which features simplified functions.

Senior Mode offers voice-assisted technology, simplified navigation, larger font size and icons. The Taobao app homepage also offers games for elderly users to unlock special discounts for groceries, making the experience more engaging for the silver generation.

In addition, Taobao has also released a list about "everyone is buying", which is updated daily with recommended products based on 7-day cumulative sales. Also, an official singles' Day Participation Guide for the elderly has been customized for the reference of the elderly.

(October 20, 2021) Pre-sale Livestreaming Sales Surpassed Last Year

图片 1.png

Source: Taobao Live Data

Singles Day's pre-sale usually started in late October in the past, but customers could only complete the purchase on November 11. The last few years have started to become different. Two sales periods with two pre-sale windows have extended this year's shopping extravaganza. This new setup is an excellent way for retailers and brands to increase their sales by leveraging this "double" Singles Day and giving consumers more time to browse and explore the promotions on activities.

Merchants cannot only develop respective marketing strategies for these two sales windows toward different product lines, product portfolios, pricing strategies, and promotional items, but they can also adjust their strategy for the second sales period based on the first window's performance from November 1 to 3rd.

According to Taobao Live Data, on the pre-sale day of October 20. The top anchors' livestreaming session recorded pre-sales amounted to nearly 20 Billion RMB. Compared to last years' Top anchors' only sales of almost 10 billion, it can be seen that this year's Singles' Day involved more viewers', livestreaming e-commerce has also become mainstream way.

October 21, Taobao Marketplace's Livestream Sales-List shows that top influencer Austin Li's livestream session final sales reached 10.653 billion RMB, Viya's live sales of 8.252 billion RMB, the 3rd Cherie's live sales of 930 million RMB. Austin Li and Viya's livestream shopping performance continue to lead. The double oligarchy pattern continues far more than other anchors.

When the livestreaming room of Austin Li and Viya became the most significant traffic pool on Singles' Day, more and more brands joined the livestreaming rooms of top anchors to increase their sales. According to CBN Data, on the night of this year's pre-sale, the number of products in Austin Li and Viya livestreams totaled over 900[1]. Among them, 25 brands had more than 5 SKUs in a single livestreaming room, and international brands represented by Estee Lauder, L'Oréal and Lancôme had a total of 20+ links released in the two main livestreaming rooms (Austin Li and Viya).



[1] https://cbndata.com/information/211096 

[2] https://cbndata.com/information/210933 

[3] http://i.wshang.com/articledetail/267430

[4] http://i.wshang.com/articledetail/267474 

[5] http://www.199it.com/archives/1323692.html 

[6] https://www.alliedmarketresearch.com/men-personal-care-market

[7] https://www.alizila.com/alibaba-1111-double11-singles-day-set-new-record-looking-beyond-numbers/ 

[8] https://jdcorporateblog.com/jd-com-posts-over-rmb-349-1-billion-yuan-transaction-volume-for-singles-day-grand-promotion-2021/ 


Alibaba livestreaming Singles Day E-commerce

Selling DTC in China 2022

Download our 100-page whitepaper to unlock your business opportunity among Chinese consumers!

Download now