11.11 Sales: A Brief Summary on 2019’s Biggest E-Commerce Event

11.11 Sales

By Julia Koh & Syira Junaidi
December 2019
The 11.11 sales that happened in November marked the biggest sales event for many Asian and Southeast Asian countries. Also known as Singles Day, this shopping phenomenon has overshadowed Black Friday since 2013 and boasts record-breaking sales year after year.
In Malaysia, 11.11 Sales day was a highly anticipated day, with campaigns starting as early as October. And e-commerce brands were happy to announce another successful year. Shopee claimed 70 million items were sold on their platform in one day. Think that’s impressive? How about Lazada, who announced that they have sold 1 million items, in the first hour!
And in China, the world’s largest consumer market, Taobao boasted a sale of 50 billion yuan (RM29 billion) in the first 13 minutes since the sale started. Talk about bragging rights!
To know how these brands managed to hit soaring sales records, let’s look at how they did it:

Lazada Malaysia

Lazada started their 11.11 campaign during end October to build up the hype. They began with deals such as ‘Chup Dulu’ to reserve special items, then ‘Instant RM111 Cash Back’ and ‘Mesti Beli Deals’ on selected electronics, together with a barrage of promo codes, discounts, vouchers and price slashes.
With the help of Lazada’s e-wallet and its Onederful Wallet program, the brand created a complete marketing strategy that lead buyers to buy and spend more. First-time buyers could find themselves surrounded with irresistible deals that would soon nurture them to loyal users.
After targeting nearly 10 million users, Lazada claims to have broken their previous sales record after just 13 hours into sale day. With a plethora of items and merchants at their wake, Lazada solidifies itself as the default e-commerce shopping experience for Malaysians.

Shopee Malaysia

Aside from that ridiculous jingle that won’t leave our heads, Shopee also bagged football megastar Cristiano Ronaldo to join their advertising campaign. As the second most popular e-commerce brand in the nation, Shopee was not settling as second-best.
They offered deals similar to Lazada; discounts and promo codes galore. But they focused their promotions extensively on specific categories such as Home & Appliances, Groceries, Pets, Baby & Toys, and Mobile & Accessories. They topped their sales campaign with a lucky draw grand prize of a Toyota Vios, with a minimum spend of just RM1 (read; everyone can win!) and daily cashback at up to 111%.
As a result, Shopee announced that their top merchants saw a huge increase in site visits and a 740 times growth in orders on 11.11. But Shopee is not calling it a day yet, as they prepare themselves for their 12.12 Shopee Birthday Sale.

Taobao

This Mandarin e-commerce brand outperformed itself in many ways this year. Taobao reported that an RM160 billion worth of goods were sold on 11.11, exceeding last year’s record RM130 billion haul. Popular brands that contributed to the statistics include Apple, L’Oreal and Dyson.
Its strategy was also similar to the other two e-commerce platforms. However, Taobao differed in that they offered many great deals for branded items that people willing to buy. Taobao was also good at creating hype for the branded goods and blasted social media with sponsored posts.

What Does This Means for Brands?

Malaysia is one of Southeast Asia’s largest consumer market and the fastest adopters in online shopping technology. This includes fintech where Malaysians are quick to adapt to cashless payments, e-wallets and online banking. All the more reason for brands to have an online presence and start building their digital branding.
With the demand for online shopping comes the demand for a viable logistics partner among merchants and dropship agents. There is now a wide array of couriers that caters to different types and sizes of businesses. New logistics brands such as Lalamove and J&T Express thrive in an e-commerce-addicted Malaysia. This means merchants have more options to get the best deals for their shipments.
Malaysian consumers are also very price-conscious. They anticipate sales such as 11.11 to do the bulk of their shopping, eyeing the price drop and waiting for discounts and rewards. Brands could use this opportunity to move some products, clear up some stock, and create a customer base that they can nurture all year long.

In Conclusion

If you haven’t already participate in 11.11 sales, perhaps you can consider joining next year. As the trend is predicted to be growing, it might be a good idea to start a new distribution channel through Lazada, Shopee or Taobao. These online marketplaces are already popular among Malaysians so it can help with your brand exposure during major campaigns such as 11.11. Brands can leverage on these platforms’ massive marketing campaigns both for sales and awareness.
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