The Internet is the most cost-efficient tool to advertise in China
The popularity of Internet in China is rapidly increasing with a shrinking number of users reaching almost 600 million for the last few years. China consultant findings also show that China’s online shopping population is increasing fast from year to year. After being only 8% in 2009, it was approaching 20% of the population by the end of 2012. Chinese people spend around 1 billion hours on the Internet each day and this number is expected to double by 2015. Therefore, it is proved to be effective to use the Internet as a board for advertisement and promoting new or existing brands. This is especially crucial for foreign brands, which aim potential Chinese customers and seek to suit their tastes. They need a tool, which would target a large number of potential consumers.
How to use the Internet to advertise in China
It is broadly agreed that the Internet is the best tool for advertising in China due to its growing popularity and rapidly increasing number of users. Companies choose different ways of advertising on the Internet in accordance with their targeted public and needs. The most commonly used methods in China include search engines, portal, networks, video, online community and many others. These are the tools, used by producers, to send information to potential customers and make them being aware of a product. Search engines are regarded as the most preferred of these tools, in particular by consultants in China. There are some important criteria, which should be followed by producers if they wish to enter Chinese market effectively and attract a considerable number of potential Chinese customers.
Firstly, it is crucial that a website is translated into Chinese. The reason for this is that Chinese is official and the most common language in China. Even though there are some people, who speak English, most of the population in China write and communicate in Chinese. There is a distinction between traditional Chinese language and simplified Chinese; therefore, it is advisory that the special tool, which would automatically translate the websites into the correct language in accordance with person’s location, is used. Generally, people from Macau and Hong Kong speak traditional Chinese while outside these areas simplified Chinese is used.
Another important thing while advertising in China is to choose the right search engine. As long as Google is not allowed in China, it is of no use if Chinese customers are the target. In China, there is an alternative to Google called Baidu, which is extremely popular among Chinese Internet users and accounts for around 65% share of the search market. If a website is submitted into Baidu from the outside of Chine, it generally takes longer to be indexed than when it is submitted from the inside. It usually takes up to one month to get a website submitted into Baidu, which may seem long; however, if there is no political, spam or porn context and a website is written in decent Chinese, it will finally appear on Baidu.
As mentioned above, the preferences of Chinese customers are specific and different from those of Europeans. Therefore, new companies, which enter the Chinese market, need to use effective advertisement tools to make sure that customers’ needs and preferences are suited. Nowadays, the internet is the most common tool for advertising used by both local and foreign producers due to rapidly increasing the popularity of Internet in China.