The Chinese internet retailing market posted current value growth of over 84% through 2012, amounting to a market value of RMB406 billion.
After years of rocketing growth, especially throughout 2010 and 2011, current value growth of internet retailing has slowed slightly, but it still recorded extremely dynamic growth in 2012.
The size of the Chinese internet retailing market is expected to exceed Japan in 2012, and overtake the US to become the largest online retail market in the world by 2013.
The vigorous market movement in internet retailing has attracted more manufacturers and industry players to venture into the internet retailing market by opening their own on-line shops, either independently or via the leading B2C platforms in China, such as Tmall.com.
In China, internet retail sales accounted for 4.3% of the total retail sales in 2011, and are set to reach 6.3% by 2015. The share of online transaction in total retail sales still lags behind that of other developed countries. For instance online retail sales accounted for 12% of total retail sales in the UK, 9% in the US and 9% in Germany.
Having said that, Chinese consumers are more likely to shop online compared to their counterparts in Europe and the US. Around 70% of consumers in mainland China shop online at least once a week, compared with around 40% in the US and UK, and around 20% in the Netherlands, France and Switzerland.
Taobao.com continued to lead the China internet retailing market in 2012, consolidating its leadership with a value share of 51%, up by over seven percentage points over 2011, the highest share gain among all companies.
As the largest B2C platform in value terms in China, Taobao.com has a degree of control over pricing, helping it to achieve substantial growth in value sales, particularly during the November 11th Shopping Spree Festival, which has been held annually since 2009.
To boost its relatively weak logistics, taobao.com started to cooperate with local logistics companies to set up warehouses in seven cities in China, to ease logistics pressure, especially during the Shopping Spree Festival period.
Convenience, wide product availability and competitive prices will continue to be the major driving force for the Chinese internet retailing market over the next five years, which is expected to register a dynamic value growth of over 29% through 2017.
For more information on the Chinese internet retailing market, see the latest research: Chinese Internet Retailing Market
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