China’s Second Largest E-commerce Holiday:6/18 A Preview

China’s Second Largest E-commerce Holiday:6/18 A Preview

China’s second largest annual “e-commerce holiday” lands on June 18th. 

C2 Global expects an increase in overall spending for 6/18 this year, building on record-setting $136.5 billion sales of 2020. We surveyed 1,020 consumers in China to assess their preferences for the upcoming 6/18 promotional event, and 76% said that they were either going to spend the same or more in 2021 compared to 2020. Only 23% of respondents are planning to spend less than in 2020.  

Although many countries were in the middle of COVID lockdowns in June 2020, China was already mostly back to normal without lockdowns at this time last year, when major ecommerce platforms notched record high 6/18 sales.  

Top categories in which consumers plan to spend more this year include fresh food, snacks, apparel, household goods and beauty.

6/18 Purchase Motivation

A majority of respondents cited price discounts as the most incentivizing factor for their 6/18 purchases. 49% of respondents have been waiting to make a purchase for a specific item on 6/18 and 32% want to treat themselves on 6/18.

The Impact of COVID on 6/18

32% of respondents plan to spend less in 2021 due to COVID, while 26% said that COVID has likely impacted their purchase decisions, but not their total spend.

Singles’ Day versus 6/18

When asked about their habits on 6/18 compared to Singles Day (11/11), most respondents said that they consider them to be roughly the same. 25% said they spend more on Singles’ Day and 18% plan to spend more on 6/18. 20% said that they tend to purchase different types of products on each holiday.

Beauty Preferences

Face masks were the top choice for 6/18 purchases in the beauty space, followed by serums, cleansers, moisturizer and sunscreen.

Foreign Brands vs. Domestic Brands

In general most respondents plan to spend more on local brands than on foreign brands. Sectors where foreign brands dominate are watches & jewelry, coffee/wine, handbags, vitamins/supplements and pet products.

Sustainability and 6/18

A whopping 70% of respondents said that sustainability practices of a company will impact their 6/18 purchase decision – this is similar to levels we saw for Singles’ Day 2020. 

Livestreams and 6/18

Livestreams continue to be major sales drivers on the large platforms such as Tmall. When asked what type of livestreams will most impact their 6/18 purchase decision, respondents equally indicated that they watch livestreams in order to get a better 6/18 deal and to learn more about the product. These were the two biggest factors by far, followed by KOL/host recommendations and limited edition products.

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