Worldpay predicts record sales on China Singles’ Day

  • Last year’s Singles’ Day saw three times the volume of sales than Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined
  • Spending more than doubled between China Singles’ Day in 2014 and 2015, rising by 136%

Worldpay, the global leader in payments, has predicted that online retailers are set for their biggest ever China Singles’ Day this year. According to Worldpay, last year’s Singles’ Day was the premiere global event for online shopping, having processed three times more retail transactions on 11/11 than on Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined, and the annual event is set to grow even more.*

An analysis of last year’s data found that spending more than doubled between 2014 and 2015, with the total volume of Singles’ Day transactions rising by 136%. Compared to the previous week, Worldpay recorded a whopping 956% uplift in transactions, as consumers across the globe splashed the cash on clothing, cosmetics and household items.

In the UK, year-on-year sales have increased by almost a half, with 2016 promising to continue the trend of outstripping Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Boxing Day Sales. Worldpay processed on average over 9,000 transactions per minute globally during China Singles Day 2015. Global spending peaked at 8am GMT at which point they were processing over 1000 payments per second.

Maria Prados, VP Global Retail, Global eCom at Worldpay said: “We’ve been tracking the rise of China Singles’ Day since its inception, from an occasion for singles to party in China, to the world’s top-grossing online shopping holiday. It is incredible to see just how quickly the event has eclipsed the traditional holiday sales period. Last year, merchants from over 20 countries took part, and as Singles’ Day goes global, retailers need to prepare themselves for the biggest ecommerce event of the year.”

“To turn browsers into buyers, it is essential your website appeals to the needs of local shoppers. Our recent research** found that security is a huge concern for Chinese consumers, revealing that more than two-thirds feel more secure making a purchase from a well-known website or reputable brand. And with nearly half of all transactions in China made by e-wallet, online retailers also need to let shoppers pay how they want to. With a website optimised for mobile, and some well-timed product offers and discounts, online retailers could double their sales on Singles Day.”

Is your business ready? Ahead of the year’s biggest online shopping event, here are some tips for retailers to capitalise on the opportunity:

  • Build brand awareness in the run up to 11/11. Start to increase awareness via social media ahead of China Singles Day so shoppers know your brand is involved.
  • Think about offering pre-orders and promotions before the date so shoppers can order products before you run out of stock.
  • Show delivery costs and methods upfront. Shoppers want to see when they will receive their goods. And they want to know how much they will need to pay before they buy.
  • Encourage shoppers to create an online account. Try to take advantage of the busiest day of the year to convert one-off shoppers into loyal ones.
  • Let shoppers pay how they want. Nearly half of all transactions in China are made by e-wallet, and the market leader in Alipay, so it is crucial to offer popular local payment methods.
  • Look after your VIPs. Reward your loyal customers with personalized shopping services, discounts and promotions to make sure they feel valued and continue shopping with you.
  • Focus on your mobile proposition. A whopping 37% of Chinese shoppers (53% of millennials) buy on their mobile, way above the global average of 13%.

* Figures refer to YoY customer transaction data on 11/11/2015, compared with 2014 data.
** Worldpay’s Why do they Pay That Way study polled 20,000 consumers across Australia, Brazil, China, France, Germany, Japan, Mexico, the Netherlands, the U.K. and the U.S.