Double 11 2021

What to expect from Double 11 2021? Pre-sales, new records and top brands

The Double Eleven Shopping Festival, also known as Single’s Day refers to the online promotion day on November 11 (11/11). 2021 is the 12th Double Eleven shopping festival in history. On this day, many online merchants conduct large-scale promotional activities on online platforms like Tmall, Jingdong and Taobao. As sales start at midnight, according to data from iiMedia Research, in 2021 80.4% of netizens said they would stay up late to buy goods during the Double Eleven, and 19.6% of netizens said they would not stay up late to buy goods. The rules of Double Eleven are constantly adapting to the shopping needs of more people. The Double Eleven 2021 presales have already started on some platforms, with Li Jiaqi’s livestream pre-sales reaching over 10 billion CNY.

Taobao’s presales started on October 29th, on Tmall on October 20th, the Jingdong’s pre-sale is also opened on October 20th, but unlike Taobao and Tmall, there are several waves. This time, there are 5 time periods in JD. Each time period consumers get different discounts.

This year’s Double 11 continues to break brand records, with 290,000 brands taking part in the 2021 Shopping Festival. Last year, their number reached 250,000. During Tmall’s Double 11 2021, the platform will offer discounts on 14 million items, available discounts will be up to 50% including over 1000 flagship stores of top brands. So, what else to expect from Double 11 2021?

Tmall and JD presales break the record this year

From the perspective of turnover, Tmall Double Eleven’s turnover has skyrocketed from 213 billion yuan in 2018 to 498.2 billion in 2020 (from November 1-11). Every year, Double Eleven is setting a new record.

Tmall transactions during Double 11 Double 11 2021
Data Source: iimedia, designed by daxue consulting, Tmall transactions during Double 11

On October 20 2021, Tmall Double 11 officially opened the presale. This year Tmall Double 11 will have a total of more than 8 million products participating in the promotion presale activities. Among them, such products as Apple mobile phones, computers, and Dyson hair dryers have gain the most attention.

2021 had record-breaking pre-sales, why brands should get in on 11.11 pre-sales activities

JD claims that more millennials and Gen Z are joining the presale festival. According to platform statistics, consumers between the ages of 18 and 35 accounted for over 70% in the pre-sale period. With many brands opening pre-sales at 8 p.m., they quickly broke the pre-sale record set on their first full day of pre-sale last year.

JD Home Appliances had a good start in 2021. The presales volume exceeded that of the whole day on November 11 last year. The overall performance of JD’s mobile phone category is also exceptionally bright: iPhone turnover exceeded 100 million in 13 seconds, all-day turnover of Xiaomi and Honor increased by more than 100% year-on-year, OPPO sales increased by more than 3 times.

Asos laptop sale Double 11 2021
Source: JD, Asos laptop sale

ASUS gaming professional graphics cards, ASUS thin and light notebook computers, and Xiaomi four-curved flexible screen gaming phones have become hot products during presales.

Our experts say pre-sales help avoid bottlenecks in the supply chain. “Huge amount of sales can lead to stock issues. In China where there is excellent internal integration, one more day can be all that is needed to restock products and potentially sell a lot more” according to the project leader Camille Gaujacq.

Also, 11.11 can be overwhelming for consumers, with some netizens even joking that catching all the sales and knowing the final prices of products is the biggest mathematical challenge they have had since high school math. Pre-sales allow for more diversity in discounts, with more time for consumers to decide whether they want the products, all with less pressure on the clock. According to project leader Steffi Noel, pre-sale are also helpful to luxury brands that are cautious about over-discounting, “diversity in discounts allows more high-end brands to participate with different levels of discounts without appearing too aggressive on the pricing strategy.”

Which product categories will be hot this year?

There are three main categories that Chinese people buy on Double Eleven. The first category is daily necessities. Some people stock up daily necessities such as tissues, laundry detergent, shower gel and so on and Double 11 is a good chance to get them cheaper. The second category is beauty, makeup and skin care. Many cosmetic products in China, including famous domestic and foreign skin care products can be bought with more than 50% discount on this day. Moreover, there are many gifts, such as gifting boxes from some luxury brands. Another popular category is a digital home appliance, which are usually too expensive to buy.

Beside buying clothes, mobile phones, and luxury goods, more young Chinese are interested in investing and improving themselves. Therefore, online training courses, Kindle e-books, treadmills, and various types of online training courses purchases during Double 11 have grown significantly.

Top Clothing Brands during Double 11 Pre-sale

Past several years the following brands were leading in clothing category on the Chinese e-commerce platforms during Double 11.

  1. Uniqlo
  3. ONLY
  4. Evely
  5. Handu clothing store
  6. Peacebird
  7. Bosideng
  8. Le Ding
  9. Ou Shili
  10. Teenie Weenie

Top Digital Brands during Double 11 Pre-sales

Digital appliance is another popular category to buy during 11.11 in China. The following foreign and domestic brands usually lead during this shopping event.

  1. Apple
  2. Huawei
  3. Xiaomi
  4. Lenovo
  5. HP
  6. Asus
  7. DJI

Top Beauty Brands during Double 11 Pre-sales

The cosmetic brands actively promote their products during 11.11 in China. The top 3 positions in terms of sales have foreign brands, even though such famous domestic brands as Perfect Diary are also on the list.

  1. L’Oreal
  2. Lancome
  3. Estee Lauder
  4. OLAY
  5. SK2
  6. Nature Hall
  7. Pecho Antelope
  8. Queen
  9. Perfect Diary
  10. Winona

Broadcasting keeps being the most popular promotional activity

Li Jiaqi broadcast Double 11 2021
Source: Pandaily, Li Jiaqi broadcast

Broadcasting with KOLs on e-commerce platforms is becoming one of the most popular and effective methods of promotion. These broadcasts began in late October, fueling consumer interest in Double 11. For example, during the broadcast of Li Jiaqi, also known as Austin Li on October 20 2021, he listed more than 400 products, and the sum of transactions during his broadcast exceeded 37 million yuan. He is a popular blogger who focuses on beauty products and lipsticks in particular, which is why people trust his choice.

blogger Viya Double 11 2021
Source: CGTN, blogger Viya

Another popular influencer is Viya (薇娅). Her live broadcasts are a mixture of shows, commercials and casual conversations with viewers. She also began broadcasting on October 20, which lasted over 14 hours. Total sales were over 8 billion yuan, and the average purchase price was about 300 yuan.

Promotional activities of brands during Double 11 2021

Due to exceptional success of Double Eleven, it is no surprise that this shopping festival has become extremely important for overseas brands in the Chinese market and is a springboard for Chinese brands introducing new products. It is for many, an anticipated period to kickstart sales and increase revenue sizably before the end of the year.

Lancome using KOLs and special packages to attract consumers

For example, Lancome frequently use KOLs to get consumers’ attention. On October 9th 2021, Lancôme makeup and perfume ambassador Wang Junkai posted a message on his personal social platform, urging fans to go to Lancôme to get makeup foundation sticks to create texture makeup on Double Eleven.

Lancome Double 11 campaign Double 11 2021
Source: Tmall, Lancome Double 11 campaign

Lancome’s pre-sale consists of unique experience packages for Double 11 2021, which they sell both on Tmall flagship store and 

Estee Lauder special gift boxes

Estee Lauder is another brand which launched promotional campaign before Double 11 2021. The brand created two discount gift boxes. One is the “Estee Lauder Star Repair Experience Gift Box” with a 20 yuan repurchase coupon. The other is the “Estee Lauder Star Repair Early-Adopter Gift Box” with a 120 yuan repurchase coupon, which includes a small bottle of multi-recovery night repair complex.

Estee Lauder Double 11 sales Double 11 2021
Source: Tmall, Estee Lauder Double 11 sales

Key takeaways about Double 11 2021

  • Double 11 2021 will likely set another record in terms of sales and participating brands. It already exceeds the amount of presale transactions and products last year.
  • Foreign brands actively participate both in presale activities and shopping festival 11.11, in terms of cosmetic brands and clothing brands, foreign companies lead.
  • Beside traditional top categories such as daily necessities, home appliance and cosmetic, the products for education such as training courses are also expected to grow this year due to interest from young generation.
  • Pre-sales are an increasingly important part of Double 11, brands should start planning on having sales in October to catch the pre-sales shoppers.

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