15th December 2011
According to the Data Center of the China Internet (DCCI) (www.dcci.com.cn), online shopping accounted for over RMB 383 Billion (USD $57.39 Billion) in spending, which is 37.6% of Mainland China’s total online economy for 2010.
In July 2011, China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC) reported that 173 million consumers which is 35.6% of the total number of Intern users in China have online shopping experiences.
Based on our ongoing Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) Omnibus, less than half of the consumers participating in our survey prefer to shop online in brick and mortar stores. (36.5% – 2009, 33.4% – 2010, 34.6% -2011). However, any of those who have never bought groceries online tell us that they would love to try it (31.1 % -2009, 29.2% – 2010,29.3% – 2011).
On the other hand, our FMCG survey validated that more and more Chinese consumers are familiar and are already shopping online. There is a twenty percent 20% increased in the respondents who have online shopping experience over the last three years. Although many respondents do not have the experience of online grocery shopping, twenty-nine percent 29% are open to buying products on the Internet.
From our survey, the most popular category of purchase online is home products, such as things for the kitchen and cleaning supplies. Computer/electronics, clothes/accessories are the other most favored products that people tend to shop for. The least popular items are drinks, pet supplies, cooked food and fresh food.
Although people have less preference shopping for cooked food and drinks, compared with 2009 both categories have increased affinity in 2011. Not only cooked food and drinks, but snacks, car accessories and baby care categories have gain bigger preferences over the last three years. These up-and-coming categories just might be the next big things for online stores fronts.
On the other hand, beauty/health, and sports/outdoor equipment have decreased in preference between 2009 and 2011.
As to where consumers are shopping online, seventy-five percent 75% of the people prefer to shop on Taobao which is the most popular ecommerce website in China; however, compared with 2010, its preference has dropped almost six percent 6% in 2011. Although 360buy.com, the second most popular ecommerce site with only twelve percent in preference has grown dramatically with an increase at a very respectable 9% in 2011. Companies who want to reach the largest amount of online shoppers in China should be on both Taobao and 360buy.com.
There is no doubt that consumers in China are starting to make purchases online in a very big way. And this trend is bound to move dramatically over the next few years. Ecommerce is finally taking a big foothold here in the middle kingdom and keeping pace with its high growth economy, and maybe becoming a major force in the growth of the much anticipated domestic consumption.
Number of Samples: 2009: 990, 2010:694, 2011:293
Data Capture Period: 2011.11.01 – 2011.12.15
China Polling conducts Omnibus Surveys on an ongoing basis to provide continuous tracking of consumer trends in China. This innovative approach to tracking consumer behavior will allow companies looking to enter the China market to get the most up to