Retailing in Qingdao

February 2020

As the major city in Northern China, Qingdao is a modern city with dynamic commerce vibe, where local players take the lead for decades. Given the geographical proximity and close trade relation, retailing in Qingdao is influenced by Japanese retailers, leading to the prosperous of CVS.

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Key Findings

Local retailers show high penetration in Qingdao, but external competitors are showing growing threatith

As a major city in Northern China, local players enjoy high coverage across the city thanks to early entry. The traditional downtown area is crowded with local retailers such as department stores under the Liqun Group. In addition, external players are emerging, exposing serious competition to local retailers.

Japanese retailers are well represented across the city

Given the heavy investment by Japan, Japanese retailers have thrived in Qingdao for decades. Qingdao locals enjoy the considerate service and various commodity choices offered by Japanese retailers. In addition, the popularity of Japanese culture among the young generation also fuels Japanese product sales.

Re-invented shopping experience is highly valued by Qingdao locals

As a major city in Northern China, Qingdao is a competitive location for modern retailers. With the rising convenience of online shopping in Qingdao, local consumers attach high importance to the shopping experience in terms of offline shopping.

Fresh food holds great importance for Qingdao locals

Thanks to rising awareness of healthy living, Qingdao locals attach great importance to fresh food. Catering to this trend, supermarkets and hypermarkets have been expanding fresh food SKUs and focusing on freshness to attract local citizens.


Qingdao: leading marine technology hub and popular destination
Consumer profile: convenience-orientated, trendy and intelligent
A typical outlet
Key findings
Local retailers take lead in Qingdao, forming major shopping clusters
Local convenience stores prevail but facing serious competition
Japanese retailers enjoy high reputation with loyal consumers
Japanese convenience stores are well represented in Qingdao
Shopping malls gain popularity in Qingdao with better shopping experience
New retailing format is well received due to optimised experience
Fresh food contributes high share in offline channels even in CVS
Fresh food becomes key advantage of boutique supermarkets
Liqun Group Co Ltd
Qingdao Ministop Convenience Store Co Ltd
Qingdao Youke Convenience Store Co Ltd
Key takeaways


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