Trends and statistics of Chinese e-commerce

The Chinese e-commerce market is expanding. The added value of the digital economy in China accounted for more than 38% of the country’s GDP. Almost ¼ of physical goods (FMCG) were bought online, compared to 4% in the US. It should come as no surprise since China has the biggest digital buyer population globally.

Chinese e-commerce

Market share percentage of major search engines in China

There are over 980 million internet users in China. They search the internet daily to get information or buy products and services. Since Google is blocked in China, the market is dominated by domestic search engines.

China’s search engine market share (all devices):

  • Baidu 74%
  • Sogou 19%
  • Bing 3%
  • others 4%.
Chinese e-commerce

Number of online buyers in China

Out of 980 million internet users, over 840 million are digital buyers. That is twice as much as in 2016 when there were over 420 million online buyers. Online shopping is extremely popular; in 2013, there were 9.19 billion express-delivery packets, and in 2021, the number skyrocketed to over 108 billion. Chinese opt for buying on mobile apps and live-streaming e-commerce platforms compared to desktop.

E-commerce sales in China

Half of all internet retail sales were generated in China. The biggest e-commerce Chinese players are Alibaba and Regarding popularity, the most visited online marketplaces in China are Taobao and Pinduoduo. Xiaoshongshu is also a big market player with a target market of females aged 30-49 living in tier III cities. Taobao, Tmall (both owned by Alibaba Group, T-mall being the largest B2C e-commerce platform), Xiaohongshu, Pinduoduo, and account for 80% of the total e-commerce market in China.

Chinese e-commerce: payment methods in China

Chinese people have confidence in online purchases. How do people in China usually pay for online transactions? The most popular options are:

  • Alipay 支付宝
  • WeChat Pay, TenPay 微信支付
  • UnionPay 银联支付
  • BestPay 翼支付
  • JD Wallet 京东支付
  • Baidu Wallet 百度钱包
Online payment in China

Live streaming e-commerce

There are about 360 million live-streaming retail e-commerce buyers in China. The number is expected to hit 415 million in 2025. Chinese consumers watch three-five live streams a week. Live-streaming shopping events generate a lot of sales. The most popular one is Alibaba’s Singles Day, also called 11.11. during which one live-streaming event can get 250 million views.

If you export to China, make sure to list your products on Chinese e-commerce marketplaces to get more exposure. But before you enter the Chinese market, register your trademark.