alibaba-singles-day

Alibaba did it again! The Chinese e-commerce giant beat its own record at Singles’ Day 11:11 event with USD 30.7 billion total sales during the 24-hour event beating last year’s USD 25.3 billion.

The company has long overtaken the total sales spent on Amazon’s Prime Day (USD 4 billion), plus the US’ Black Friday (USD 8 billion) and Cyber Monday (USD 6.6 billion) combined.

Travel deals have become a prominent part of the sales fest. Alibaba’s online travel agency Fliggy spearheaded discounted travel products. Exact sales of Fliggy have not been released yet.

This year, other Chinese OTAs and travel companies like Hotels.com, Ctrip, Lvmama, and Qyer joined the bandwagon and launched their respective promotions.

However, it is not just big travel companies that took advantage of the huge shopping event. Destinations also took notice and, for the first time, Alibaba launched destination marketing to cater to Chinese tourists.

The Indonesian government and Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba have agreed to sell five local products through the “Indonesia Pavilion” on its Tmall and Taobao e-commerce sites. The five products are Luwak Drip from Kapal Api Coffee, Richeese Nabati biscuit, Papatonk Premium Shrimp Crackers, Yang TyTy Sarang Burung Walet (swift’s nest), and Indomie noodles from PT Indofood. The Indonesian products were reportedly packaged with Indonesian travel information.

Other destinations chose to work with Chinese OTAs and airlines to offer promotions. Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) worked with Fliggy and Ctrip to offer special packages and promotions at the sale. Thailand suffered a huge drop in Chinese tourists following the tragic accident in Phuket in July. The country hopes to win the trust and confidence of Chinese tourists once again.

“There are 300 million middle-class consumers in China.”

Commenting on Chinese consumers, Joe Tsai, executive vice chairman of Alibaba Group, said: “There are 300 million middle-class consumers in China and I think in the next 10, 15 years, that number will double to 600 million. That trend is not going to stop, trade war or no trade war. You are seeing this upgrading of consumption of Chinese consumers. I think that’s a long-term trend.”

The event was available in China and overseas with retailers in the US, Southeast Asia and Europe offered discounts to customers on Single’s Day.

China’s Singles’ Day started in the 90s as a festival for men to celebrate being single. Its date 11 November, consists of four “ones” representing four singles. Alibaba turned it into a consumer event in 2009.

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