Here we highlight 6 key festivals in 2018 on Tmall that your brands cannot miss, because they contribute to the growth of the platform, and also the merchants.
According to a new report from eMarketer, experts predict that the decline of Baidu in favor to Alibaba is due to the new market conditions in Chinese digital business. Alibaba has adapted fast to the last digital ads regulation and currently enjoys the leadership in terms of online advertising revenue.
The Chinese Internet landscape is characterized by the huge prominence of the three technology giants.
As you may know, Baidu is the largest player in China in digital advertising market, Alibaba is the Chinese eCommerce leader firm and alongside both, plays Tencent.
These Top 3 in digital industry are estimated to command a total of 60% in ad revenue in the present year, and amount around $42 billion.
What factors have led Baidu to its future decline?
Although currently Baidu still controls the largest share of the online advertising market, the success of the company in 2015 is far from repetition. Baidu’s share in China’s digital ad market is expected to drop to 21% in 2016, and forecasts are less positive for the coming year.
In early September, in the team we analyzed in our article “New Online Advertising Rules in China” the new online advertising regulation in China and its impact in all digital business with presence in China.
The Internet Ad Interim Measures is a new regulation prompted by the State Administration for Industry and Commerce of China. It arose from the Government’s claim by adopt new rules over online advertisement, at the time it was expected to impact on Chinese Digital Marketing as a whole.
As we mentioned before, some fields were subject to special regulation: healthcare, medicine, food and beverage. But new regulations also affect to Internet advertising practices with some other measures: it is required that all paid ads to be clearly marks in search results, prescription medication and tobacco ads have been forbidden and it is already mandatory to certain medical and health products.
From the beginning, these changes were identified by outside analysts as a serious handicap for the future of the company. As Shelleen Shum told,
“We think the impact will be larger on Baidu than on the other search engines given Baidu’s larger market share and its dominance in medical service ads.”
But the coming into force of the new rules, is not the only reason for its current decline. The lack of strong mobile devices is also affecting its ability to attract advertisers.
The main driver in the Chinese market is the mobile platform. As Lyu Ronghui said,
“Huge traffic is the bedrock of online advertising business. But unlike Alibaba and Tencent, which have numerous successful mobile products that can attract traffic from users. Baidu still lacks a new cutting-edge to help jumpstart its slowing traditional search business.”
Facing Baidu, Alibaba has surpassed its rivals taken advantage of the new conditions. As Shelleen Shum explains, its reinforcement is due to,
“Although also affected by the new regulations, Alibaba’s ad revenue, particularly from the mobile sector, shows no sign of abating thanks to the robust growth of its e-commerce retail business.”
Although at present Baidu controls 28% of the online ads marketing, Alibaba is expected to become the largest player in China’s digital advertising market before finishing 2016.
New rules in China
In China, digital landscape changes as faster than imaginable. There are plenty of creative ways to sell your services and products in China, but acting in the hand of a company based in the country, is always a big extra bonus for your business in China.
In search of a Digital Marketing & Ecommerce Agency?
Have you ever tried to build a new overseas brand and fail in your attempt? In any approach to China, foreign brands often make some common mistakes when trying to sell their products in China mainland. Although such misconceptions are not exclusive to online environment, we will focus on those that particularly affect your approach to e-commerce in China. China is already the world’s first e-commerce market.
Are you going to miss its enormous potential?
First bug: China is mobile, and you better record it
It is not the first time we tell you this, and for sure it won´t be the last. As we mention before in our article “How to Take Advantage of the Latest Ecommerce Revolution?”, Ecommerce has been a great revolution for both companies and customers.
Nowadays, Chinese prefer to use their mobile devices rather than their laptops and according to the new trend, companies have already starting to adapt themselves to portable devices. Moreover, those companies using U-commerce are focused on improving the customer experience through customizing and navigation created in cooperation with the User.
Second bug: E-commerce may be an asset in your country, but in China is irreplaceable
We cannot fail to mention Frank Lavin, CEO of Export Now, when he says,
“In China, Ecommerce is the cake.”
This may mean that you will need to adapt your business to the new environment. Do not expect it to be China who suits you, this does not work this way.
Remember that whoever hits first, hits twice. Embrace e-commerce as the enabler of your business it is, and take advantage of the immense benefits that electronic commerce can bring to your company to start selling around the World!
Third bug: Social Media is there to stay. Register your account and start moving!
Not only around the 93% of the online searches in China are done in their own search engines –Have you ever heard Google does not work in China?– but also about a 68% of the customers take a look on the official Social Media account before buying.
Do not miss the opportunity to have a voice in that huge chicken coop is the network, start developing a tailored communication strategy for your brand and gain your piece of the cake!
Fourth bug: Domestic and lazy thinkers, or how the triumph from a day doesn’t make it daily
Do you think you will keep doing in China pretty much the same things you were doing before and as a result you will achieve success?
A basic rule you should never forget again is, no matter the experience and the many different markets in which you have entered before, is that new horizons always implies a new starting on your understanding of the target, so we definitely encourage you to start a market analysis.
Will your brand be competitive in China?
Do you offer something different regarding your competitors?
Is there a suitable market niche in the country ?
These and a thousand more questions require a prior discussion, keeping in mind that China should not be underestimated: the country enjoys some peculiarities you definitely must know before starting your landing.
We strongly recommend you seek assistance from professionals focused on the Chinese market, in order to enhance your chances of success in the country.
Fifth buf: Do not try to do everything by yourself, ask for advice
We are not tired of saying it, and will do so again: China is not a flat road. Do not try to embark on this mission unaccompanied, but pick very well with whom.
Look for complementary partners interested in joining forces, go to Government agencies dedicated to external actions and internationalization and definitely search for specialized agencies in the country to start outsourcing some tasks.
Already in search of a consulting expert in digital marketing and e-commerce? You have come to the right place.
Nowadays, we all are very well aware of the importance of Ecommerce on current business.
E-Commerce has been a great revolution for companies and customers, helping the exchange of goods and services without geographical barriers via Internet.
With most of famous brands selling via e-Commerce and the development of B2B, B2C and C2C markets, the last revolution has come to stay: the Mobile Commerce or better known, M-Commerce.
But, What do we mean when we talk about M-Commerce?
The increase of the usage of smartphones and tablets and the growth of its capabilities, lead to a higher percentage of the population using technological devices to purchase their goods or services. According to the increase of the demand and in order to take advantage of this new trend, Companies have already identified the need to adapt their ways of selling to the portable devices.
China, the biggest consumer via E-Commerce country and a technologically advanced market, is a good example to put into consideration: the Retail and C2C ecommerce sales have grown from the 9% to the 55.5% since 2013.
This information show us that nowadays, most of the C2C Chinese customers prefer to use the mobile device than their PCs or laptops.
Omnichannel Marketing, What´s its purpose?
At the same time, to E-Commerce has joined a new feature: the existence of the multichannel approach to sales, or “Omnichannel”.
This channel is looking for the continuous shopping experience of each customer. The aim of the Omnichannel Marketing is offering a continuous experience to the user, independent from the device or channel chosen.
In practice, this leads to a complete integration between phones, tablets and computers and it requires the combination of an anthropological and technological strategy in approaching the users in a smarter way.
From the combination of all this, arises the U-Commerce concept.
What is U-Commerce or Ubiquitous Commerce?
If we simplify, we would say that we are talking about U-Commerce when E-Commerce is based in the customer experience.
The user must be in the center of all Companies’ strategies. Those Companies using U-Commerce must be able to provide personalized service to their clients from the information they get from mobile devices and PC-s.
The keys are: customizing and navigation experience created in cooperation with the User.
How is this possible?
It is obvious that the technological development is responsible for this change and makes necessary to pay attention to the internal customer databases.
Companies must try to find out common interests between potential clients who visit their EShops, considering each potential customer as unique and with their own preferences and priorities.
Efforts should be directed to avoid high rates of leads who finally give up navigating in the last purchasing phase, and reach around 60-70%.
This is the crucial reason for companies to invest their efforts and resources in understanding the customers and their behavior: to boost sales.
A lack of privacy: How companies use data?
U-Commerce uses personal information in order to provide a personalized service. A big number of customers feel disrespectful that a company can get their personal information and manage it as they want. Therefore, we must emphasize the benefits that the data can bring to the user and treat delicately the data we are able to collect.
Times are changing and the number of E-Commerce consumers is increasing exponentially and also the M-Commerce is growing very fast.
It’s important to face it and consider user’s needs, their preferences and desires. So companies must rechange strategies and adapt to the new eCommerce “revolution”.
Are you thinking about improving the user experience and exploit the advantages that the use of Online Marketing gives us?
Come to us, We are expecting you!
This article has been edited by Paula Vicuña, from 2 OPEN.
In the first half of 2015, L’Oreal’s financial statement reported revenues of 12.82 billion euros worldwide. In comparison with 2014, there was an increase of 14.7%, which is the fastest growth that the company has had in the past 20 years. Its digital marketing campaign was not the exception, with an outstanding 40% increase in online sales, exceeding 1 billion euros; it represented 5% of the company’s total turnover strengthening its position in the online market.
Nowadays, in the cosmetic & beauty industry, 70% of customers search products online before they actually buy them, which means that social media must play a big role in this. Why? You might be wondering, well, the importance of knowing consumer’s needs and preferences enables companies to come up with tailored ads and maximize their marketing budget. Many industries have transitioned from the classic marketing model into its modern version to further understand consumers and optimize results.
It seems that the upcoming era is digital, the society now is constantly connected with their mobile phones, and people are interacting on social media all the time. Most Chinese people love to share moments of their daily life via Weibo or Wechat, these social mobile applications gather a lot of Chinese young people who are potential online buyers, this is one of the main reasons why this new consumption model results so profitable.
Taking all of this into account, L’Oreal, the global beauty brand, keeps track of trends and maintains strong competence in the Chinese online market. The business credo for the marketing industry “where are the consumers, where are we” is practiced well by L’Oreal. In fact, in the digital marketing revolution, L’Oreal is not only expanding its e-commerce channels, they also apply a complete strategy to digital marketing.
All the product and services have to be digitalized
For instance, on the CES conference in Las Vegas, L’Oreal released a patch for sun-induced skin damage – My UV Patch, helps users track real-time ultraviolet exposure damage on the skin with the help of an App. In addition, L’Oreal has also launched a mobile App called Makeup Genius. The App can help users find their own appropriate makeup. Most Chinese people are shy and they do not dare to try exaggerated makeup, with this App users can try hundreds of makeup options and share on various social platforms. In the future, L’Oreal will try to launch more service-oriented App.
-L’Oreal APP for IOS
Digital involvement into every step of decision-making
In the buying decision process, customers experience 4 steps: identifying, considering, purchasing, and sharing. L’Oreal gets involved in every step of the process. For brand awareness, they launched a video advertisement on the entire media platform of Weibo and Wechat. For the decision-making stage they issued a series of makeup tutorial videos on Youku and finally let the users use social media to share their purchasing experience. With this, the entire consumer decision-making process is digitized.
-L’Oreal official account on Weibo and Wechat
Take this case for example, in the 2015 Cannes Film Festival; L’Oreal launched a video advertisement on Wechat, where L’Oreal’s stars would post their pictures and voice message saying “I am in Cannes, will you come? ” and a link to L’Oreal’s e-commerce page. Through this event L’Oreal attracted a lot of fans and potential customers, and the brand’s social influence was digitalized.
-L’Oreal Cannes Event on Wechat
All brands on digital platforms
Based on the first two points, L’Oreal Group including Lancome, Maybelline, L’Oreal Paris and other brands, try to position themselves, as much as possible, on various digital platforms, that is, “where are the consumers, where are we”. Since, nowadays, almost all of the customers are online, L’Oreal has to be searched and discussed as much as possible by customers in order to gain more popularity in the digital world.
-L’Oreal brands on Weibo
When analyzing L’Oreal’s digital marketing strategy, it is worth noticing that this giant enterprise takes digital marketing as a key element of responding to the rising demand among beauty consumers. The O2O (online-to-offline) model gradually drives the enterprise transforming it into a new business model. Digital marketing could not only develop a new market but also help to create a new CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system for other companies. We believe in the future and Chinese digital marketing will become more and more important in the following years.
Have you learned Chinese yet?
If you have any questions or require any information about our services, please do not hesitate in contacting us, our group of specialists will happily assist you.
This article was edited by Andres Arroyo Olson from 2Open.
The first quarter of 2016 is already behind us, are you still figuring out how to start your e-commerce business in China? For some of us e-commerce still feels like a new business model, however, China has long passed this stage, various data suggests that it has already become a traditional industry in China. Traditional or not, let us sort out the current e-commerce situation and forecast its areas of development.
Ecommerce is on its way to become a traditional industry in China
Ten years ago the ecommerce in China was brand new. Taobao was the most popular C2C online platform. At that time, people who had the technical skills and knowledge of search engines could get over 80% of return of investment on a Taobao shop. Nowadays, Taobao offers more than 1 billion products, has over 10 million sellers, and around 320 million active users. These huge numbers only come from one of Alibaba Group’s marketplace so you might be able to reckon the whole picture. After ten years high-speed development, China’s ecommerce is not a new industry anymore; its development is now as mature as the real estate or the catering industry.
Traditional industry vs Ecommerce
In recent years, the traditional industry has been strongly affected by the online market, some companies have managed to adapt their business to the new online scene, but some have failed at this task. This trend of transitioning from offline to online businesses will speed up this year, and although there are currently more traditional businesses than online ones, online businesses will eventually catch up.
It seems that both business models cannot co-exist, however, if the resourceful traditional industry would explore Chinese digital marketing and ecommerce solutions, they would be able to achieve better results with half the effort.
Develop a 020 (Online-to-Offline) business model
In coming years, online retailing will be a fully integrated part of the market, it will help companies grow, and sale more efficiently. On the other hand, they will also have to implement the offline part of it, a successful integration of a good O2O business will, without a doubt, thrive in market. Suning began handling deliveries for Alibaba, in order to push Tmall Supermarket into the massive market, and Jingdong is promoting Jingdong Daojia, all the actions from the leading Ecommerce companies indicate that the O2O model is inevitable to come.
Ecommerce in the rural areas
Last year ecommerce in rural areas had a rapid development. Alibaba made a long-term project to promote online shopping in order to expand its business coverage. The central government formally issued a document to help the promotion of rural ecommerce and facilitate the integration of online and offline. Alibaba, Jingdong and Suning are also pushing the development of ecommerce in rural areas so we should expect an huge increase this year.
Great development of CBEC (cross-border ecommerce)
Over the past 2 years, CBEC has become one of the most popular business models in China. It has given import business a lot of opportunities; moreover, since the Chinese middle class has grown considerably (first place in the world with over 100 million), it turns out to be a very profitable business. The main consumers are people between the ages of 30-40 and have great acceptance for foreign products, this will bring a lot of overseas ecommerce companies into the Chinese market.
Here at 2Open we specialize in ecommerce and digital marketing. Our goal is to understand our clients business needs in order to provide the best possible services. If you have any questions or require any information about our services, please do not hesitate in contacting us, our group of specialists will happily assist you.
This article was edited by Andres Arroyo Olson from 2Open.
In 2 Open we like to be updated. We are constantly attending events that are related to our business scope (Digital marketing and E-commerce in China) so that we can have all the relevant information on the current situation in order to provide our customers with the best posible services.
In this case, 2Open attended a networking event in Spain that involved Chinese e-commerce companies and Spanish suppliers. The topics covered in the event were related to E-commerce and Digital marketing strategies, more specifically, to the different ways brands have to adjust their products so as to sell them through e-commerce platforms with particular emphasis on the booming of Chinese cross-border e-commerce, its advantages ,and the new fiscal legislation that will be implemented starting on April 8th.
Apart from the information exchange, we were glad to find out that some of our clients (SoloStocks, Amvos, Ecoficus) also attended the event. We also had the chance to talk with other brands who are interested in selling their products online in China and/or doing Digital Marketing to improve their performance.
All in all, it was a pleasant event filled with interesting people finding new opportunities. If you want to know how we can help you to maximize your Sales & Marketing efforts in the Asian giant, please do not hesitate in contacting us. We will be more than happy to talk about your current goals and situation and provide you with the best solutions for your business needs.
This article was edited by Andres Arroyo Olson from 2Open.
On March 24, 2016, the Ministry of Finance of the People’s Republic of China released an article on its website to finally put an end to the on-going rumours. Turns out that all the gossips were right all along, so brace yourselves because the taxation reform for imported retail products through cross-border e-commerce is coming.
According to the article approved by the State Council, starting on the 8th of April 2016, China will implement the import tax policy for cross-border e-commerce retail sales (business to consumer, or B2C), and also adjust the tax policy on personal postal articles.
Currently, items for personal use are considered to be personal postal articles, these types of items represent a reasonable number of cross-border imported goods and will be taxed according to the new tax policy on personal postal articles. The new personal postal article tax is targeted on non-trade imported goods; it combines tariffs, import VAT and consumption tax. Generally speaking, the tax rates of personal postal article tax will be lower than those of imported goods for trade.
Products for cross-border e-commerce retail sales are imported through postal channels and these work differently than the traditional trade of files and correspondences, this is the main reason why unfair competition exists between cross-border e-commerce retail imports and general trade imports within the same category. This is the main reason why cross-border e-commerce imported goods will be considered as merchandise and charged with tariffs, import VAT and consumption taxes.
As a response to consumer’s reasonable demand, the single transaction limit for cross-border e-commerce retail goods will be increased from 1000 RMB to 2000 RMB, furthermore, the annual limit will also be increased to 20000 RMB. For cross-border e-commerce retail goods within the 2000 RMB price limit the tariff will be 0% with an import VAT and consumption tax of 70 % of the current statutory tax. As for the goods that surpass the single transaction or annual limit, they will be charged with full taxation under the general trade model.
Taking into account current regulatory conditions, for the moment, only cross-border e-commerce retail imports that can successfully provide trading, payment, logistics and other related electronic information, will be taken under the scope of the new policy. Personal belongings and imported goods that are unable to provide related electronic information will remain subjects to current regulations. Meanwhile, to optimize the taxation structure, simplify customs declaration and tax payments, and improve customs clearance efficiently for passengers and customers, China will adjust tax policies on personal postal articles. The changes include a reduction from the current four tax items (tax rates: 10%, 20%, 30% and 50%) to three. Under the new policy, tax item 1 is mainly for commodity from MFN with zero tariffs; tax item 3 is mainly for high-end commodity with consumption tax; the rest will be subject to tax item 2. Tax rates for the three new tax items will be 15%, 30% and 60% respectively.
We will have to wait and see how this affects cross-border e-commerce in the following years. Any enquiries you may have about how to increase sales and manage a successful ecommerce business model do not hesitate in contacting us. Our group of specialist will be more than happy to assist you.
This article was edited by Andres Arroyo Olson from 2Open.
Nowadays cross-border ecommerce is in the rise in China. It seems to be a viable and legal way to import or export products into or out of China avoiding significant tariffs and quotas. Apart from the traditional model of cross-border ecommerce, that is, overseas online shopping, we have classified 4 specific operational models of cross-border ecommerce according to their different business schemes.
- Overseas online shopping
- Direct delivery platform
- Self-support B2C model
- Guide and rebate shopping model
1. Overseas online shopping
Overseas online shopping is perhaps the one that is most familiar to Chinese consumers. It is a sort of procurement service for people who want to buy the overseas products. Consumers purchase the products from foreign retailers or individuals on web pages or mobile apps, and then they get the product by transnational logistics. There are two major ways so accomplish this.
Online shopping platforms
One of the main points an online shopping platform has to do is to attract third-party sellers who meet the logistics requirements. Sellers settled in the platform usually have overseas purchasing power; they regularly purchase the specific product based on consumers’ needs and after the order is received from the customer they transport or mail the product directly to China. This is a typical example of a C2C model, the online platform profits from access fees, add-value services, and transaction fees imposed to the seller.
Representative platforms: G.TAOBAO.COM/JD WORLDWIDE/USASHOPCN.COM
“Moments” in Wechat is becoming a popular way for promoting products online. Although its warranty is mostly based on social relationships, fraud could also occur. With customs restrictions the service would be regarded as smuggling, so there still time to wait for the integration of it in the overseas online shopping environment.
2. Direct delivery platform
Direct delivery platform, also named “dropshipping”, is a model in which the ecommerce platform sends the order from the customer to the manufacturer or wholesale directly, then the latter delivers the product to the customer according to the information provided, it is important to notice that the product is sold with its retail price. Because the end-supplier is the brand vendor/factory, this model could be considered a B2C model. In this case, most of the profit for the direct delivery platform comes from the price difference between the retail price and the wholesale price.
Representative platforms: TMALL.HK/YMATOU.COM/KJT.COM
3. Self-support B2C model
When it comes to the self-support B2C model, most products need to be prepared by the online platform before shipping. There are two types of self-support B2C platforms:
Comprehensive self-support B2C platform
For now the only leading comprehensive self-support B2C platform is YHD.COM, which is supported by Amazon and Wal-Mart.
Vertical self-support B2C platform
This model means that the platform focuses more on a certain area to choose the product category, such as food, luxury product, cosmetic or clothing.
Representative platforms: WOMAI.COM/MIA.COM/SASA.COM
4. Guide and rebate shopping model
For a simpler understanding we will split this topic into two parts, the conduction part and the transactional part. Conduction refers to all the means and channels through which customers are led to the product or service: news, online forums, blogs, or ads, all constitute a part of conduction and focus on attracting the consumer. As for the transactional part it involves the submission of the order to an overseas retailer and any monetarily transaction that comes with it.
In order to guarantee product quality and adequacy, this types of platforms usually cooperate with an overseas ecommerce group. Normally the guiding/rebating platform in China joins their pages with the overseas ecommerce pages and once the transaction is done, the overseas ecommerce gives about 5%-15% commission rebate to the Chinese platform. Later the guiding/rebating platform refunds part of the commission to the customer.
One of the main advantages of this model is that the integration of new products and the development of the business itself are relatively simple. Also, because it is a joint between two online platforms, the conduction part results more rewarding since both parties can attract a huge number of customers in a short amount of time and meet the customers’ demands.
As for the disadvantages, long-term projects might be a bit more difficult to carry out since the business depends on two separate ecommerce platforms. Management of the supply chain could also become a problem due to distance and time zone differences.
Representative platforms: ETAO.COM/HAITAOCHENG.COM/123HAITAO.COM
Cross-border negotiations seem to bring a lot of advantages if one is intending to do business with China. Choosing the right model for your business’ needs is crucial for the growth and success of it. Here at 2Open we have plenty of experience with these types of business models and our team of specialists will be more than happy to assist you with any enquiry that you might have.
This article was edited by Andres Arroyo Olson from 2Open.