Daily Digital Pulse of China: WeChat, Cache-Cache & B2C
WeChat adds image recognition feature which can benefit online-retailers
Since the release of the WeChat 5.0 version (launched in August last year) users could already learn more about a product like books or music albums by scanning the barcode on the cover or packaging and be redirected to the company website – and in some instances directly to the e-commerce sites for purchase.
This week WeChat released a new Image Recognition Feature. Now users no longer have to rely on barcodes but can simply scan a book cover and e.g. read reviews from Douban Book (a popular chinese platform for book ratings and reviews) or purchase the book directly from online retailer Dangdang.com. WeChat plans further enhancements to this service which is currently offered for free.
French Ready-To-Wear Brand Cache-Cache to accelerate it’s development in China E-Commerce.
As part of its development strategy in China, the French ready-to-wear brand Cache-Cache has decided to step on the accelerator for their investments in the Chinese e-commerce market. The brand has over 850 brick-and-mortar stores across the country and is already selling its products on Tmall. Cache-Cache is now considering to have its own platform of e-commerce to reclaim its online business in order to support its omni-channel strategy based on web-to-store. Online sales should allow the brand an annual growth of 30%.
Source: Les échos de la franchise
China’s B2C Industry Rapidly Gains Market Share
Despite both platform types growing at double-digit rates, it seems as though Chinese online consumers are increasingly turning towards business-to-consumer platforms over consumer-to-consumer ones to satisfy their online shopping desires. C2C platform sales accounted for nearly two-thirds of all Chinese online retail sales in 2013, but it has been predicted that the B2C sector would overtake the C2C one by 2017, as its growth rate is twice as fast. Why the rapid growth rate for B2C platforms? Shoppers have grown to prefer the higher quality and service of official flagship shops. It isn’t a matter of Taobao, China’s most popular C2C marketplace, performing poorly – it is simply due to the fact that there is more and more competition in an area where there wasn’t any for quite a while. The number of C2C e-tailers has actually decreased by 17.8% year on year from 2012 to 2013, and it is estimated to fall even further to just 9.18 million by the end of this year.
Source: iResearch China