What is Singles’ Day?
The Singles’ Day is an annual Chinese shopping festival. Singles’ Day occurs on November 11, and for this reason it is also called Double 11 (11/11). Singles’ Day was created for China’s large number of bachelors and has become the largest offline and online shopping day in the world.
Not an official public holiday, it is said that the day was first conceived as an “anti-Valentine’s Day” celebration in the 1990s. Not anymore. Today Singles’ Day is less about single people than about online shopping. It has gained recognition since the Chinese Alibaba Group pushed sellers, both brands and third-party, for a day of significant discounts. In past years, sales have skyrocketed.
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Largest online sales day
As the largest shopping day in the world, in 2017, 11/11 was already reported as being double Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined.
In 2019, Singles’ Day generated an estimated $38.4 billion in gross merchandise volume (GMV). For comparison, it is estimated that Prime Day, Amazon’s annual online sales event, has generated over $10 billion this year.
Singles’ Day is also expanding into other countries in Southeast Asia. In 2016, Alibaba had acquired Lazada, and now Lazada participates in Singles’ Day. As for other international shoppers, they can go on Alibaba’s AliExpress.com, a third-party marketplace. Chinese shoppers can shop on Alibaba’s Taobao (consumer-to-consumer online retail for Chinese-speaking shoppers) and Tmall (business-to-consumer online retail).
Fakes on Singles’ Day
The world’s largest online shopping festival is targeted by many legitimate brands, manufacturers, and third-party sellers, as well as by counterfeiters and scammers of all kinds.
With numerous manufacturers and sellers, almost every product available, and countless customers, counterfeiters are able to exploit the situation and sell their illegal merchandise.
There’s nothing like a sales event to cover for fakes. While Double 11 offers entertainment and games, it is a day in which shoppers look for discounted prices, especially consumers in lower-tier cities that are more price-sensitive. With so many discounted goods, it is hard to verify if a product is authentic or not. And with value and convenience at top priority, consumers may be willing to buy products even if risks are higher.
The risk of fakes is significant: China continues to have more counterfeits than any other country in the world. A state news agency report from 2019 states that over 40% of goods sold online in China are fakes or poor-quality goods.
The additional platforms that take part in Singles’ Day, such as JD.com, electronics seller Suning, and Lazada, increase the threat of fake goods, with the latter doing so across Southeast Asia (in Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Vietnam).
Over the years, pre-sale events have become increasingly longer, allowing counterfeiters more time to sell their fake merchandise. Pre-sale events also give them a chance to illegally copy wording, images, and photographs by the authentic brand to appear legitimate and attract shoppers.
Other fraudulent activities to watch for are fake reviews, fake discounts (price increase in anticipation of 11/11 sales), false advertising, or other illicit activities.
International brands on Singles’ Day
What are the Chinese buying? Should my brand be concerned?
Data shows that people in China love international brands. International brands accounted for over 40% of total purchases during Singles’ Day 2018. This trend is expected to grow.
A growing number of U.S. based retailers, including big names, offer deals on Alibaba’s platforms, and some do so also on the U.S. websites. It was reported that 295 luxury brands took part in Singles’ Day 2019, and more are likely to follow.
This year, for example, Dior announced its first Singles’ Day limited series for purchase on their WeChat boutique and website. Dior is reported to be the first major luxury brand to have a special launch for Singles’ Day.
Protect your brand on Singles’ Day
Brands can work to protect themselves, first and foremost by securing their intellectual property rights in all territories where they manufacture or sell their products or plan to do so.
Once you have secured your intellectual property rights, it’s time to be proactive.
Do not rely on online marketplaces and sales channels to detect and remove infringements for you. As the eCommerce trend strengthens even more as a result of the coronavirus pandemic and the decline in brick-and-mortar retail, online brand protection is more crucial than ever.
Wiser Market’s online brand protection solution is designed to fight online IP infringement. With 24/7 online monitoring and a team of dedicated experts we provide you with comprehensive online protection, scanning detecting and proactively removing fakes and other IP infringing products.
Whether you wish to fight counterfeiting, prevent trademark and copyright infringements, combat gray market selling or protect your domain name – Wiser Market can do it for you with unrivaled results.
As opportunistic counterfeiters get ready to exploit Singles’ Day and the holiday season, get ready to counter them with a Wiser brand protection solution.
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When is Singles’ Day?
Singles’ Day is an annual shopping day that occurs on 11/11.
Where does Singles’ Day take place?
Alibaba calls it a global shopping festival, but Singles’ Day sales take place mainly in China, and increasingly across Southeast Asia.
What products can I buy on Singles’ Day?
On Singles’ Day you can buy almost any product online. In 2019, Alibaba reported the addition of 1 million new products, and this year it expects more than 2 million new products.
Do retailers outside of China take part in Singles’ Day?
Apart from Chinese marketplaces, businesses outside of China have also started offering 11.11 sales and promotions.
Is Singles’ Day big in the U.S.?
Singles’ Day was not joined by too many U.S. retailers on their U.S. websites. Still, some retailers do offer sales. Some retailers market the discounts as Veterans Day sales since Veterans Day also falls on 11/11.
How big are the sales on Singles’ Day?
The discounts on Singles’ Day vary. Many go for 11%, but you can also see huge discounts.