Double 11 Goes Offline!

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Double 11 Day Live From Beijing

I was in Beijing China during the 2019 Double 11 Day Festival. Formerly referred to as Singles’ Day, November 11th has fast become the largest day for ecommerce in the world, outstripping Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined. Year-on-year populariser of the event Alibaba has consistently broken their own record for gross merchandise value sold within a 24-hour period. This years takings was a massive $38.4 billion. In recent years more ecommerce companies have started to gain traction in this event outside the traditional big two players of Alibaba and Pinduoduo has started to produce significant results, along with international ecommerce platforms across Asia, Europe and the Americas.

This year, three trends emerged from the shopping festival: the use of live streaming for brand owners and influencers; the internationalisation of Double 11 event; and the cross-over with offline commerce to generate sales in stores. I visited a number of markets and shopping malls on the day to gain first-hand experience of the offlining trend, with sales and shoppers everywhere! I posted a video live from Silk Street market which can be watched here.

Tmall had a giant street promotion tie-in with the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics.

Another domestic giant Huawei had offline offers to match a hugely successful online Double 11 day – why worry about a trade war when you can sell $10 million worth of stock in a few hours….

Smaller stores were in on the act too.

Along with a bunch of international brands, including the likes of trendy backpack maker Fjallraven, tennis-chic Lacoste and Sony getting rid of PlayStation 4 stock in preparation for the launch of PlayStation 5 next year.

Even local restaurant owners thought they would get in on the fun offering discounts for hungry shoppers!