A report recently released by ‘Sogou Input’ and ‘Renmin University’ (one of the most prestigious academic institutions in China and the largest input software company) has revealed a number of fascinating insights about the Chinese digital market.
There are over 700 million Internet users in China, that’s twice the population of the US with a 55% Internet penetration rate that is now growing year on year by 8% to 10%. The number is highly likely increase to 75% of the Chinese population will be online by 2020, and the majority of Chinese online activity is happened on mobile devices.
· The Chinese level of online engagement is world leading, 35 billion words are exchanged by over 700 million users every single day.
· Users are far more active in the evening, most users are active on electronic devices at 10pm, the Chinese ritual is to search online and check their social media just before they go to bed, this is the optimal time for posting and engagement.
With the most Internet users of any country, China is the world’s largest and fastest-growing e-commerce market. Capitalizing on opportunities.
According to the survey done by McKinsey’s latest survey of China’s Internet users. The research points to areas with major growth potential: the uptake of online shopping among consumers in low-tier cities, e-commerce penetration beyond first-mover product categories such as apparel, purchases initiated from social media platforms.
The e-commerce activity of low-tier cities (Tier 3 and below) now rivals or surpasses that of high-tier cities (Tiers 1 and 2). Low-tier cities’ total spending on e-commerce caught up with that of high-tier cities for the first time in 2015 (Exhibit 3). And low-tier cities are now home to 74 million more online shoppers than high-tier cities.
In high-tier cities, by contrast, the survey shows limited potential for e-commerce growth driven by user penetration. Nearly everyone living in high-tier cities is online: 83% of people are 13 and older. Among those Internet users, 89 % already shop online. Further e-commerce growth in high-tier cities may therefore need to come from increased shopping frequency.
Starting from 2014, Tencent, WeChat’s parent company, began a serious push to open up its platform for developers to build ecommerce stores and a wide range of online services.
Instead of building standalone apps, some developers now build their services within WeChat. WeChat’s wallet allows users to seamlessly make in-app purchases. Its social networking allows users to influence each other’s purchasing decisions.