China’s apparel and footwear market has seen a surge in e-commerce penetration since the COVID-19 outbreak, and is expected to continue to grow, driven by the diversification of the e-commerce landscape led by the emergence of interest-based e-commerce. Tailored digital solutions are provided by domestic technology conglomerates to drive the digitalisation throughout the industry chain involved marketing, operation and manufacturing.
This report comes in PPT.
COVID-19 significantly increased online penetration in China’s apparel and footwear industry, from 25% in 2019 to around 35% in 2021. With more fashion players ramping up their deployment in online distribution, e-commerce is set to continue to outperform all other channels in the post-COVID-19 era, though at a slower pace of expansion, fuelling the recovery of the apparel and footwear industry in the post-COVID-19 era.
Short video platforms, such as Kuaishou and Douyin (the Chinese version of TikTok) are changing the way brands engage with consumers. The interest-driven business model, which calls for a better understanding of consumers’ implicit needs, further amplifies the importance of digital marketing, and three significant approaches are emerging, namely virtual spokespeople, online fashion shows and livestreaming.
Domestic technology conglomerates Alibaba, Tencent and JD.com form the tech backbone of China’s digital fashion industry, and offer digital marketing solutions using big data and AI that are increasingly localised and tailored to the cultural and social needs of Chinese consumers, from customised e-commerce solutions to deployment in omnichannel digitalisation.
Beyond e-commerce and the transformation of front-end operations, digitalisation is also accelerating throughout the Chinese fashion industry’s supply chain. After the COVID-19 disruptions and strict lockdowns the country underwent in spring 2022, manufacturers, retailers and brands are all very aware of the importance of being agile. This has led to investment in AI and other technologies to help with omnichannel fulfilment, pricing, real-time stock management and even on-demand production.
Apparel is the aggregation of clothing and footwear. This dataset covers retail sales of apparel through both store-based retailers and non-store retailers. Excludes black market sales (i.e. untaxed, generated within informal retailing)and duty free sales (travel retail). Items must be new when sold to the consumer; second-hand/used items are excluded. Antique and/or vintage clothing and footwear is also excluded.See All of Our Definitions
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