With Single’s Day looming, UK retailers should be gearing up for a splurge of Chinese shoppers, especially over mobile.
According to a timely study by Royal Mail, more than half (55%) of shoppers in China bought items from British brands in a three month period, spending an average of £104 per month – with 79% of them shopping on mobile.
China’s e-commerce market is a busy place with the average online shopper spending £123 per month, compared to £89 in the UK. It’s set to get even busier. Three in four shoppers claim to have recently increased their rate of online shopping while confidence has risen 30% within two years. 79% of China’s shoppers make purchases via their smartphone (up from 70% in 2015), compared to 28% of UK shoppers.
And there is a real appetite for ‘Brand Britain’ and British goods, which are regarded as being well made and genuine. 87% like to buy British brands and 76% trust items bought from British retailers not to be counterfeit.
According to Nick Landon, Managing Director of Royal Mail Parcels: “This study provides a deep dive into the largest e-commerce market in the world. By 2020, China’s e-commerce market is set to be larger than those of the US, Japan, Germany, the UK and France combined. UK brands are really clicking with China’s shoppers and have a unique advantage as their goods are perceived to be of premium quality. UK retailers should feel confident that exporting to China can deliver benefits to their business. Breaking into this market has been made much more straightforward thanks to Chinese third-party platforms such as Alibaba’s Tmall.”
Almost two in three (61%) shoppers in China have bought clothes online, compared to the international average of 46%. Food and drink (51%), footwear (44%) and toiletries (36%) are also popular with China’s online shoppers.
China’s shoppers find British retail websites in a variety of ways. At the front of the queue are search engines (44%), followed by word of mouth (42%) and 30% via advertising. 30% find British goods via social media which is significantly higher than the international average. Shoppers in China are far more likely to buy from a UK retailer while shopping (53%) than they are to look for one from the start (38%).