Singles' Day is the biggest shopping event in the world, with Chinese consumers spending an estimated US$14,3-billion in 24 hours
Online shopping recorded its biggest-ever sales day yesterday (11 November) as Chinese consumers spent US$14,3-billion in 24 hours during an event known as Singles Day. Of that total, US$9,8-billion in purchases were made via mobile devices.
Singles Day is a celebration for single people and is held on the 11th day of the 11th month because the number ‘1’ indicates a single person. To mark the day, young single Chinese will hold parties and gatherings designed to help them meet new friends or romantic partners. It has now become highly commercialised, with e-commerce retail giants such as Alibaba and JD.com competing to sell a wide range of goods to the country’s estimated 668-million Internet users.
The sales figures achieved yesterday were “very solid evidence for the power of Chinese consumers”, Alibaba CEO Daniel Zhang is quoted as saying by news agency Reuters. He added that when the company started the event, “we never dreamed that it could be such a huge shopping day”.
According to the news agency, “Singles' Day is the biggest shopping event in the world, larger than the United States' Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined. Many Chinese e-commerce firms offer steep discounts to attract consumption on a massive scale”.
Retailers now face a huge logistical challenge to get the Singles Day online orders delivered to customers. Alibaba said the company and its partners would be using 200 aircraft, 400 000 vehicles and 1,7-million personnel to handle the deliveries.