Economy

Bizarre! Chinese vendor offers scheme for lifetime supply of alcohol

Bizarre! Chinese vendor offers scheme for lifetime supply of alcohol”

This year marks the first time the sales event, which started in 2009, will include physical retailers with brands promoting the sale inside existing stores or temporary storefronts. And just like shoppers get a jump start on some Black Friday bargains in the USA, roughly two-thirds of Fung Global's survey respondents indicate they will start shopping for Singles' Day prior to November 11. She added that "last year, leading retailers such as Alibaba reported a big uptick in shoppers buying from global brands or merchants during Singles' Day".

In the same way that Hallmark seized on Valentine's Day to sell cards, Alibaba saw the event as a great opportunity to get people to buy nearly anything. It started in 1993 at Nanjing University.

It takes its name from the way the date is written numerically as 11/11, which resembles "bare branches", a Chinese expression for being single.

Although, Weinswig added: "While Western shopping holidays such as Prime Day and Black Friday tend to focus on discounts, Alibaba takes an entertainment-centric approach to its 11.11 festival marketing and promotions in order to engage Chinese consumers".

In total, Alibaba's 2017 Singles' Day is promising 15 million product listings from more than 140,000 different brands. Although the event is Asian-led, overseas stores also cash in on the action.

Regardless of which retailers actually participate in Singles Day, and if history is any guide, Alibaba will likely have a sales promotion well north of $20 billion this year.

"The extension of the Singles' Day event is similar to what has been happening in the USA, where the influence of one-day shopping holidays is diminishing as retailers adopt a season-long approach to marketing and promotions", FGRT Managing Director Deborah Weinswig wrote.

Alongside Tmall, other platforms, such as JD.com, are now key competitors.

Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT), along with its partner JD.com (NASDAQ:JD), may be the next biggest beneficiary of this year's Singles Day sales. Alibaba has created strategic partnerships with global luxury fashion brands (such as Jason Wu, Opening Ceremony and Robert Geller). JD.com is also appealing to high-end consumers with the launch of its new luxury e-commerce site, TOPLIFE. This week's event in Shanghai will feature Maria Sharapova and Pharrell Williams, among a host of other stars. Alibaba said past year that deals offered by Nike, Apple and Siemens were among the most popular.

"We want to make this a global holiday, a global festival for every consumer..." In the run-up to 11 November, Alibaba has helped 600,000 small shops upgrade their systems to track inventory more effectively, Bloomberg reports. The huge number of discounts have become a fixture in the United Kingdom since the USA phenomenon caught on here a few years ago. The phrase was coined by Ma to depict the increasingly blurred lines between offline and online shopping.



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