Online Sales Records Toppled on PRC's Biggest Shopping Day
As the sale drew to a close at midnight on Nov. 11, some 171.4 million orders had been placed on Tmall.com and Taobao Marketplace, Alibaba Group's e-commerce platforms, during the previous 24-hour period. Approximately 21 percent of those orders were placed over mobile devices, up from a mere five percent last year, as users across China took advantage of the free mobile data provided by Alibaba Group. Mobile GMV soared during the 11.11 sale to RMB 5.35 billion more than five times the amount of mobile transactions achieved last year.
Despite the huge scale of this year's event, Jack Ma, Alibaba Group's executive chairman, said that the point of 11.11 wasn't to post big numbers for Tmall but to help businesses build bridges to consumers and act as a way to give back to society and customers through cheaper products.
"We hope to turn 11.11 into a day where merchants can thank consumers," Ma told reporters. "So that once a year, merchants will be able to take their bests products and sell them for the lowest prices in order to thank consumers for their support and transform that relationship for the better."
This year's 11.11 sale involved over 20,000 merchants, including big brands like Gap and Uniqlo, offering deep discounts on an array of goods. The number of unique visitors to the website also doubled to 402 million.