Chinese e-commerce grew by 66% in 2011, representing a turnover of 93 billion euros.
With more than 513 million Internet users and 356 million mobile Internet users, according to the 29th Statistical Report on Internet Development in China by the China Internet Network Information Center, China is the world’s largest online market, and this population is continuing to grow.
With rapid improvements in the technological infrastructure there, use of the Internet is continuously evolving and becoming more sophisticated. Combine this with China’s growing middle class who have more buying power than ever before, and you can see why online shopping has become so huge there so quickly. A 2011 study of online buyers worldwide conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers found that 86% of China’s nearly 200 million online shoppers considered themselves experts at ecommerce, compared to 70% in the UK and 72% in the USA.
With an average of 8.4 online purchases per month by online buyers, China makes developed Western Internet economies look like ecommerce newcomers. For comparison, online buyers in the US made an average of 5.2 purchases and 4.3 in the UK, while in France and Netherlands just 2.6. In Germany, Europe’s largest and strongest economy, this figure was 2.9 purchases. Who are you considering selling online to at the moment? Germany? France? Or maybe China?
Only 42 million people in China (8.2% of Internet users) used travel booking services in the last year. However, the Chinese travel market is predictably seeing fast-paced growth in the coming years so online travel booking businesses are expected to experience higher growth there. South African Airways Simplified Chinese website for mainland China is an example of a full Chinese site translated by Web-Translations.
China’s scale, combined with its online population’s embrace of online shopping, present an important opportunity for businesses wanting to “go international”. However, setting up a business and subsequently succeeding in this country where almost everything is different can prove challenging. Consumer tastes, strict regulations, government involvement, Internet censorship, cultural differences and bureaucratic processes are some of the issues companies need to examine when entering China’s online market, yet the potential seems to outweigh the obstacles bearing in mind the current economic situation we find ourselves in in the West.
Recently we have completed International Blasts for China for some of our clients who aren’t afraid to begin facing this challenge: Brandy Classics and Click Meeting by Implix. This service is a great first step for companies interested in China by setting up a microsite and optimising it so you can begin to see the traffic to your site and interest in your product over there.
To find out how to launch a Chinese version of your website to start selling to China, please contact Web-Translations: sales[at]web-translations.co.uk / +44 (0) 113 815 0460.
In today’s competitive business environment, it pays to be the first company to market with a new product or service. Here are our tips on how to beat your competitors and take full advantage of global opportunities in your sector.
1. Be the early bird – get there first!
Localise your homepage for multiple markets – then you have the pick of where to focus your attention & resource rather than being forced out of the markets your competitors already operate in.
2. Forge your own path
China, Russia, and other fast-growing economies will compete with you in markets you hadn’t even begun to consider. Don’t follow the herd, but blaze your own trail. This takes confidence and a strong business plan but it is the only way to keep competitive advantage.
As its imports from and exports to other nations continue to increase at a dramatic rate, and the Chinese government’s continued efforts to encourage citizens to buy home-grown products are proving successful, can The People’s Republic of China really still be considered as an emerging market?
China’s economy has been growing by an average 10% every year for the last 3 decades, the fastest growing major economy in the world. It is the second largest economy after the USA, and could overtake the United States as early as 2020, according to experts at Standard Chartered Bank.
China is also the largest exporter and second largest importer of goods in the world, and became the world’s top manufacturer in 2011, surpassing the United States.
A study of more than 27,000 web users in 16 countries has shown that the Chinese spend the largest fraction of their leisure time online.
The survey also showed, however, that UK housewives spend even more of their free time online – a surprising 47%.
A total of 27,522 people aged 18 to 55 years old were interviewed online by TNS Global Interactive in the following countries: Australia, Canada, China, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Korea, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States. 2,500 were surveyed in the UK. The questions focused on online behaviour and, interestingly, also raised the issue of trust in traditional versus online media.