The news that business magnate, philanthropist and the founder of e-commerce giant Alibaba, Jack Ma, has decided to step down from his position as chairman of the company, swept around the world like wildfire.
It also brought considerable attention to the success achieved by the richest man in China in running and expanding his online business.
In this article, we continue with the pattern, but look at what the e-commerce industry operating in China has to tell stakeholders of the industry, situated world over.
5 Important E-Commerce trends coming out of China are:
1) E-commerce is not a first-world phenomenon
This should be a little self-evident from the way we have titled this article; however even within China there is a greater pull of e-commerce services from smaller towns and third and fourth tier cities instead of the urban metropolis and the second tier cities of this giant country.
This trend of emerging demand from the rural markets is also highly visible in other Asian countries, especially India. With a growing number of young, middle class and upwardly mobile consumers armed with smart phones, many of these regions have little or no access to physical retail infrastructure that could meet their demands. E-commerce, therefore, is expected to experience a bloom in the third world markets.
2) Social is the soul of e-commerce
E-commerce shopping experience is immersed in social media sites in China. Only over the span of one year going from 2015 into 2016, We Chat users who have shopped using its platform have doubled in percentage (from 15% to 30%). Social media platforms have become a critical meeting point between the online suppliers and potential consumers. It also offers information to make the critical decision of what to purchase in a plethora of suppliers via friends’ recommendation and online product reviews.
3) Battle of the e-giants
The continent of Asia, and especially its eastern pacific region, is set to be the location for an epic battle between the e-commerce giants Amazon and Alibaba. Both these companies have already invested large sums of money in their Asian markets and are expected to further throw in billions of dollars over the next few years. Alibaba has already taken over two of the South-East Asian heavyweights in the e-commerce sector, namely LAZADA and Redmart.