Why June 18th (618) became a Shopping Festival?

What is 618? 

  • 618 is the second largest and most important Shopping Festival in China.
  • Every year from June 1st till June  18th , China’s e-commerce landscape is filled with large-scale promotional activities and discounts on the hottest products of the moment.

 Why June 18th (618) became a Shopping Festival?


June 18th  is the anniversary of JD.com (京东) one of the Top 2 biggest e-commerce company in China. 

The company was founded by Liu Qiangdong on June 18th , 1998, and its retail platform went online in 2004. 

Over the past 10 years, Jing Dong (JD.com) has put a lot of effort into creating and promoting commercial campaigns with unmissable discounts on its best-selling products, in order to create an “emotional attachment ”in the hearts of consumers. So every year during the month of June (until the 18th ), people in China get excited and start planning their purchases. 

Soon enough other Chinese e-commerce giants (Alibaba, Tmall, Secoo) also started their own campaigns during this period, so much so that the 18th of June became one the biggest Shopping Festivals of the year.  

What sells the most during 618?

     According to the data of Jingdong, the top five categories of orders placed by Jingdong on June 18th, 2020, were:  


Smartphones, air conditioners, flat-panel TVs, refrigerators and washing machines

The top five brands in sales were: 

Midea, Apple, Haier, Gree and Xiaomi.

    Why is 618 a golden opportunity for international companies ?


  • 618 Shopping Festival is a prime opportunity for international brands to get a glimpse into the biggest market in the world and prepare to experience the incredible buying power of the Chinese middle class. 
  • International travel to China continues to be restricted for people but not for products.  After one of the most challenging years in recent history, 618 offers a way to bring the essence of your country to the Chinese consumers. For foreign brands, 618 is a great chance to understand what the Chinese market can mean for them in the long term. 

618 Shopping Festival and the Fashion Industry in China

    Companies such as florists, chocolate brands, travel agencies, jewelry, cosmetics & fashion brand have used this online phenomenon and turned it into an efficient marketing strategy to engage with Chinese consumers. At the same time, with the popularity of e-commerce, many people choose to buy their Valentine’s Day gift online to express their feelings and hope for the best.

The fashion industry in China has been thriving for the past 10 years. And with the rapid process of urbanization, the purchasing power of the population is constantly growing, thus making China an ideal market for international fashion brands.

In 2020 China’s domestic retail sales suffered a huge hit. However, in the month of June, thanks to the three-week period shopping festival, known as 618, many brands were able to offset their losses amassed during lockdown. Fashion and luxury brands are no exception

Despite the global health emergency, JD’s 618 performance in the luxury category has not declined compared to previous years. During the first hour of the event, the sales of luxury brands grew by 400 percent, respecting the trend of daily sales growth of 100 percent each year. Last year, Delvaux and Prada stood out among the top performing luxury brands, and the ready-to-wear, footwear and jewelry categories showed the most growth.

Leggi l'articolo
Why June 18th (618) became a Shopping Festival?

520 Chinese Internet Valentine’s Day

Are numbers just numbers? Well, not really. Everyone has their own favorite number, it could be a birthday date, your wedding day, a number that brought you luck in the past, wherever the reason may be, one thing is certain is that they are not just simple numbers for us.

       Chinese people also do the same, but a step above, in the sense that sometimes they communicate not only with words but also with numbers!

    The Chinese language has a very unique grammatical structure, where each word is constructed as an isolated block of meaning and more characters together are just like the pieces of a puzzle. If you think about it, numbers are quite similar in this regard, all of them have a meaning which is the quantity they indicate, but they can be separated and combined to create different numbers.

      What if some numbers sound similar to real words? Bam, then you have a match made in heaven. You can literally write a sentence in Mandarin using just numbers.

 For example, try reading aloud 520 in Mandarin, what does it sound like? Well, 520 is homophonic to “I love you” in Chinese! In fact, the 20th of May (520)  is pronounced (wǔ èr líng)which sound very similar to 我爱你(wǒ ài nǐ)I love you, that is why the 20th (and 21st) have been labeled as the Internet Valentine’s Day(网络情人节).  

    Ok, we get the part about Valentine’s Day, but why “internet”? Unlike International Valentine’s Day (February 14th) and Chinese Valentine’s Day (七夕) which are primarily for “real” lovers who are in a confirmed love relationship or even married, 520 is more about expressing your love to your crush, what in Mandarin is called  表白(confess one’s love).

    And since it may be too difficult for many to say “I love you”  face-to-face, some people decide to use Chinese social media (like WeChat, Weibo, QQ…) to confess their feelings by typing messages with 520 or 521, maybe even attaching a gift ! Here comes the business side of this special day. And as an old Chinese saying goes: “only when there is demand there can be business”.

    Companies such as florists, chocolate brands, travel agencies, jewelry, cosmetics & fashion brand have used this online phenomenon and turned it into an efficient marketing strategy to engage with Chinese consumers. At the same time, with the popularity of e-commerce, many people choose to buy their Valentine’s Day gift online to express their feelings and hope for the best.

  520 is not the only way to communicate in Mandarin, you can also take note of another expression 5201314! 520 means love, whereas 1314 represents 一生一世 yīshēng yīshì (for a lifetime). So, if you say 5201314, you are saying “I love you for a lifetime”.

Leggi l'articolo
520 Chinese Internet Valentine’s Day

Latest News!

Are you searching for #news, #tips, and #trends from #China? Then, check this out!

#Shanghai#Fashion Week’s FW 2021 edition, titled “Bloom the Spring”, kicked off on April 6th. During the 8-day program, 100-plus #physical runway shows took the stage at four different venues across the city. But, they didn’t forget about the ever-growing role played by #livecommerce: through “Shanghai Fashion and Lifestyle Carnival” brands could sell directly to #consumers through daily live stream shows.

Several #international#brands joined the event, but the real spotlight was on #Chinese#brands, local emerging talents, and #sustainability. More than 40% of the featured brands adopted environmentally friendly practices.

A few days ago, #Tmall launched a new 3D shopping solution dedicated to home-furnishing brands called 天猫家装城 (tianmao jiazhuang cheng), one of the latest new #retail innovations rolled out by the platform.

 #Tmallglobal continues its impressive growth worldwide and keeps welcoming celebrity-owned brands like the one launched by Billie Eilish.

✔️ Last week, Douyin launched a new function: the flagship stores. The primary focus of the platform is to get more #fashion#brands on board!

Leggi l'articolo
Latest News!

直播 – Livestreaming Updates

#Ecommerce#livestreaming has experienced massive growth from late 2019 and became one of the most profitable #sales strategies. Many of you may be wondering: how long will this trend last? Are Chinese consumers more likely to move on to the next big trend?

Not really! Few figures to picture the actual potential of this channel:

#Coresight estimates that #livecommerce GMV in China will reach $305 billion this year.
#iResearch predicts that it will account for 15% of total #ecommerce sales.

There’s something now happening in #China that is leveling the #shopping#experience and how #Chinese#consumers want to be engaged. It may sound familiar to you these two words: #gamification and #AR!

On #TaobaoLive, for example, consumers can follow a brand or live streamers’ account to earn points which can be exchanged for coupons or special offers on #taobao and #tmall.

Another way to make the live shopping experience more fun is with AR. On #wechat, viewers while watching a beauty brand live stream can click an icon to enter a beauty mirror mini-program and virtually try on the products showcased during the stream.

An alternative practice is to hold product #giveaways to incentivize viewers to show up right when the broadcast starts and stay through the end.

Leggi l'articolo
直播 – Livestreaming Updates

白色情人节: White San Valentine’s Day

Do Chinese people celebrate just one #Valentine’s Day?

The answer, as many of you already know, is not really!
In fact, in China, there are six different occasions to celebrate lovers. Now, we are getting closer to another one: guess what it is?

…One little hint: today we’re talking about #白色情人节.

In Asian countries, 14th March, known as #White Valentine’s Day (or White Day), is an occasion for women to gift their male others.

There are several versions of the #holiday’s origin, which was firstly in Japan, in 1977 precisely, but they all more or less focus on creating a #festival to encourage consumption in the name of love.

At the very beginning, the festival has spread to South Korea and Taiwan. Then, it gained a foothold in mainland #China.

From that moment, loads of #brands have caught the opportunity that this gifting holiday offers, just as they did with Chinese Valentine’s Day Qixi.

This year, how did brands hit on a strategy to get more consumers?

Keep following us and don’t forget to visit our website (link in comment) to discover more about our services and launch your digital marketing campaign in China!

Leggi l'articolo
白色情人节: White San Valentine’s Day

女王节 3.8 Queen’s Day

Before we dive into the marketing campaigns now live across various channels and platforms, it’s important to understand the context of International Women’s Day in China!

International Women’s Day has been recognized in China since 1949. But the day’s significance has moved away from female empowerment for the country’s e-commerce retailers over recent years – who brand the day asQueen’s Day’ or ‘Goddess Day’. Check this carousel to understand more 

Goddess Day 女王节 or Queen’s Day?

Every year, China celebrates International Women’s Day on March 8, but it has devolved into a prime time for online sales campaigns and advertising rather than a moment to celebrate the achievements of women.

In fact, 妇女节 (fùnǚjié) has become one of the most attractive national shopping holidays, also known as Goddess Day 女王节 or Queens Day

A pleasant excuse to 买买买 (buy)!

How eCommerce platforms react to this online shopping event?

Every major e-commerce platform and brand holds sales promotions to commemorate the occasion.

Why is it so important? Women’s Day kicks off the post-ChineseNew Year season and acts as a good barometer for consumer spending

Interesting to watch how Chinese marketplaces are supporting international brands in reaching Chinese consumers’ attention.
Digital red envelopes and live streaming format are a not-to-be-missed opportunity, one of the most popular forms of social commerce and consumer-facing digital innovations

Most of them put a strong effort into exclusive membership plans to build platform loyalty and give their members even more benefits. It is the case of @Secoo, which offers the opportunity to receive a cashback of 300 yuan after total spending of 2000yuan

Secoo Membership exclusive activities & Live-streaming sessions with promo coupon

Eager shopping consumers have also the chance to join thousands of live streaming sessions hosted all around the globe and purchase their most wanted items.

It all started with pre-sale activities!
On the Tmall pre-sale activities were officially rolled out on March 2nd

Leggi l'articolo
女王节 3.8 Queen’s Day