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Is shoppers' fatigue setting in for mass retail events? [Copy link] 中文

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Post time 2019-12-14 15:30:38 |Display all floors

Just as in previous years, major Chinese e-commerce players ramped up promotions on the day of December 12 for the Double Twelve shopping festival. This event came just a month after the Double Eleven shopping spree, which hit record sales this year.

Do online shoppers still buy during these events?

E-commerce players need to get as many clicks as possible. And these shopping festivals can generate the largest consumer flow in the quickest period, according to Cui Lili, executive director of Institute of E-commerce at Shanghai University of Finance and Economics.

"E-commerce platforms are just like shopping malls in leasing their booths to retailers. And like a shopping mall, they are responsible for getting the consumer flow through these shopping festivals. That's the reason the retailers want to join their platforms in the first place," Cui said.

In addition to those two "Double" festivals, there is 618 shopping festival, Black Friday, as well as special promotions for Chinese New Year, Women's Day and Children's Day.

China's e-commerce giant decorates its main page for the Double Twelve shopping festival. /CGTN Photo

Some shoppers, however, seem to be experiencing "promotion fatigue" dazzled by the frequent and various events.

The increase in calmer consumers – who are taking better control of their wallets – has reflected in the sales growth rate.

Although T-mall's Double Eleven sales hit a new record this year, the event's sales growth rate has been falling since 2017.

But it's all still working well as a marketing strategy. In the view of Bruno Lannes, partner of consulting firm Bain & Company, it's unlikely platforms or retailers will abandon it any time soon.

He said that brands always need to build on the combination of emotions and brand liquidity in attracting consumers.

"Ultimately that's why consumers are buying those brands, because those brands mean something for them. But at the same time, [they are] trying to create more impulse and more reasons [for customers] to buy through promotions," said Lannes.

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