TOTALLY IMPRESSIVE. Much has been written about Singles Day, the anti-Valentine’s Day dreamt up by Alibaba in 2009. I first wrote about it in 2014.
This shopping extravaganza has become the most anticipated online event in the world. It generates sales 2.5 times bigger than the U.S.’s Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined.
Here are 11 stats that blow me away.
- A record $25.3 billion in one-day sales
- $1.5 billion in first 3 minutes
- 256,000 transactions per second
- The first package arrived at its destination 12 minutes after it was ordered
- The Chinese railway put on extra bullet trains to assist the delivery of 812 million parcels
- 90% of sales were generated through mobile devices
- Alipay processed 1.48 billion payment transactions, up 41%, as Chinese shoppers increasingly use their mobile phones as wallets instead of cash
- Shoppers came online from 225 countries
- 140,000 brands participated including Adidas, Bose, L’Oreal, Mac, Nike, Levis, Siemens, Unilever
- This year, for the first time, Alibaba converted 100,000 real stores into “smart stores” with facial recognition cameras and technology tracking what shoppers do and buy
- The warm up to Singles Day was a 4-hour televised concert with international singers Jessie J and Pharrell Williams, actress Zhang Ziyi (Crouching Tiger) and tennis star Maria Sharapova. Nicole Kidman appeared just before midnight, as the sale started, introducing Alibaba’s founder Jack Ma, in his own kung fu film.
More details on this extraordinary shopping day below.