BRICS Business Magazine

Billions online

Billions online

Each year delivers impressive e-commerce growth as China’s shoppers heartily embrace e-commerce.

  • min read


Billions online

This article originally appeared in BRICS Business Magazine.

The year 2013 will be remembered as the one in which China surpassed the US as the world’s largest digital retail market. Each year delivers impressive growth as China’s shoppers heartily embrace e-commerce. Online sales are expected to continue on their amazing trajectory, reaching 3.3 trillion yuan by 2015.

To better understand how Chinese consumers shop and purchase onlineand the implications for retailers and brandsBain & Company surveyed more than 1,300 online shoppers across China. Among our findings are that Chinese shoppers have been more willing than those in other markets to use their smartphones to make purchases, and that they are comfortable with third-party payments and online banking. But perhaps most important, we learned that digital retailing now is the major influence on their actual purchasing decisions.

In a surprising finding, more than half of those surveyed said that, regardless of where they end up making the purchaseonline or in the physical storethey browse websites and make price comparisons before they buy. Such distinctive behavior is reflected in the quick popularity of Etao, a website that allows consumers to compare prices and then quickly navigate to the e-store offering the best one.

Read the full article in BRICS Business Magazine

Serge Hoffmann is Partner at Bain & Company in Hong Kong, Consumer Products and Retail practice. Pierre-Laurent Wetli is Partner at Bain & Company in Moscow, Consumer Products and Retail practice.


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