Alibaba's Singles Day posts another record year

Date : 12 November 2020

Soo-Eng Tan

Senior Retail Analyst

Alibaba is celebrating its twelveth 11.11. Singles Day. We have been tracking its latest news and development. Its first sales window from 1-3 November has registered record sales. We wrap up the event with a highlight of major brand activites that contributed to this year's success.

Summary and key highlights:

  • Total GMV recorded over the event including the presales period is CNY498.2bn (US$74.1bn), up 26% from last year
  • 474 brands surpassed CNY100m (US$15m) in GMV this year
  • 31,766 overseas brands participated in Alibaba’s cross-border platform
  • 200 luxury brands were on Tmall Luxury Pavilion, doubling the number of brands from last year
  • Over 90% of the participating luxury brands’ GMV surpassed their 11.11 full-day sales records from last year - Net-a-Porter, Bottega Veneta, Qeelin, Coach, Michael Kors hit that milestone within the first hour of the event

Livestreaming with a twist

Shiseido used its own employees instead of social media influencers to promote its products. Its livestream is from two locations: its Tokyo headquarters and a studio in China's Hangzhou. Over 400,000 people watched it.

Source: Nikkei Asia


Largest international presence this year

A number of U.S. merchants is making their first forays into the Asian market. This includes Uncle Bud, a Los Angeles-based personal care goods maker that has former NBA superstar Magic Johnson appear on its livestreaming event.  The brand focuses on hemp and cannabis-based products like body gels and lotions is targeting at least CNY1m (US$150,000) of sales through its online store on Alibaba’s Tmall Global platform.

Source: Uncle Bud


Luxury brands targeting young shoppers

About 70% of the customers of luxury products on Tmall Luxury Pavilion this 11.11 were making their first luxury purchase there. This group of new luxury customers represents nearly 70% of the total luxury-goods sales generated on the Pavilion. To attract young shoppers, time-limited discounts with pre-orders and coupons are available with affordable luxury brands like Coach and Michael Kors. There are also new entrants like Spanish brand Balenciaga on the platform for the first time.

Source: South China Morning Post


Other brand activations during 11.11

Lidl in Germany used this year's Singles' Day to test customer loyalty campaigns. It used "countdown offers" which were available for a short period of time and updated constantly in the online shop. A voucher code, for example, waived the flat shipping cost of €5. Lidl also used integrated newsletter advertising, providing customers who signed up additional offers. 

As part of 11.11, Dairy Farm’s Mannings in Hong Kong launched “11 BEAUTY DREAMS COME TRUE” from 1-11 November 2020 with daily flash offers. Mannings invited Snow Suen, a popular KOL in Hong Kong to host its first-ever in-store livestream. To engage viewers, Suen shared her beauty shopping list, top skincare tips and latest beauty trends.

Source: Dairy Farm

From 00:00 on Nov. 1 to Nov. 11 (China Standard Time) 

Total GMV CNY498.2bn (US$74.1bn)

Source: Alizila

From 00:00 on Nov. 1 to 20:05 Nov. 11 (China Standard Time) 

Total GMV exceeded CNY467.5bn (US$70.5bn)

11:00 in China - keeping livestreaming going 24/7 on Taobao Live

Alibaba's AI-powered avatars interact with audiences and answer their questions about consumer products using intelligent cognitive and perception technologies. The virtual anchors tap multi-module algorithms, including natural language processing and speech recognition. AliExpress, Alibaba global retail online marketplace, has been offering real-time livestreaming translation service. Viewers have been able to read translated captions to English, Russian, Spanish and French of what livestreamers are saying in real time. 

09:00 in China - top 10 countries buying from China by GMV are:

  • United States
  • Russia
  • France
  • Malaysia
  • Singapore
  • Spain
  • Australia
  • Korea
  • Japan
  • Canada

01:26 in China - top 5 provinces that bought the most automatic Mahjong tables since the start of the shopping festival:

  • Guangdong
  • Jiangsu
  • Zheiang
  • Sichuan
  • Hunan

00:35 in China - 13 brands have surpassed CNY1bn (US$150m) in GMV

While 342 brands including Apple, L’Oréal, Haier, Estée Lauder, Nike, Huawei, Midea, Lancôme, Xiaomi and Adidas each surpassed CNY100m (US$15m) in GMV.

00:30 in China - the number of orders created at peak was 583,000 orders per second

Source: Alizila

00:30 in China - total GMV of the 11-day campaign had surpassed CNY372.3bn (US$56bn)

Source: Alizila