Alibaba’s first Singles Day shopping window opens wide for sales

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Alibaba’s first Singles Day shopping window opens wide for sales

By Dan Berthiaume - 11/04/2020

The world’s largest online sales event has gotten off to an impressive start.

The 24-hour 11.11 Global Shopping Festival shopping extravaganza (popularly known as “Singles Day”), held every Nov. 11 since 2009 by Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Holding Group Ltd., held its first sales window Nov. 1-3. 2020 marks the first year Alibaba has split Singles Day into two phases (the main event occurs Wednesday, Nov. 11).

According to Alibaba, hundreds of millions of consumers visited its online marketplaces as soon as Singles Day began on Sunday, Nov. 1, with an assortment of 14 million items offered on sale. Over 100 brands, including Nike, Adidas, Apple, L’Oréal, Estée Lauder, and Lancôme, achieved $15 million USD in gross merchandise volume (GMV) 111 minutes into the first sales period. 

Beauty products, historically a popular category during Singles Day, generated more than $1.5 billion USD in GMV and exceeded 150% year-over-year sales growth in the first hour of the event. 

Other notable metrics from the first shopping window of Singles Day include:

•    The first delivery of an item purchased during the shopping event was for mosquito repellent, occurring 11 minutes after midnight to a consumer in Chengdu, Sichuan Province, China, who placed the order via Ele.me, Alibaba’s on-demand delivery platform. 
•    The number of new products debuting on Alibaba’s Tmall e-commerce platform alone will exceed 2 million, twice the number of new products from 2019.
•    Over 1,800 new Tmall brands that have been on the platform for less than three years surpassed their previous year's GMV on Nov. 1. Among them, 94 new brands have already achieved 1,000% YoY growth.
•    Nearly 200 luxury brands joined this year’s 11.11 festival; among them Montblanc, Piaget, IWC Schaffhausen are participating for the first time. 
•    On Oct. 21, the first day of presales, the GMV of Alibaba’s Tmall Global export platform increased more than 90% year-over-year.