The consumption of red wine in China almost tripled between 2007 and 2013. This enabled the country to surpass France and Italy’s consumption of red wine last year. China indeed consumed 155 million cases of red wine, while France and Italy only drank 150 million and 141 million cases. The country’s e-commerce is also booming with 618 million internet users, among them 300 million are purchasing online. Both factors combined are making Chinese e-commerce wine market a good place to sell.
A range of products for China
China might be the first drinker of red wine worldwide but when it comes to including all the types of wines, China only comes out as the fifth ladder on the scale of the world top drinkers. So that we can easily notice that the other types of wine such as white, rose and sparkling are overlooked by Chinese consumers. Red is the Chinese national color, it’s also associated with good luck, wealth and power. Red wine is also known as a being a healthier alternative than to drink rice-based spirits.
A foreign wine company willing to expand its market to the Chinese costumers should be aware that red wine is the most appealing kind of wine there.
Selling wine on the Chinese e-commerce platforms means that you must adapt to the behavior of Chinese online shoppers. They have different standards regarding the websites. They want to have to most important information to be clear and easy to find on a page. As to know: the price, the product, the details, and reviews of previous consumers. A short paying process is also a must have. But the most important characteristic to them is the price and they demand promotional offers. Chinese are used to bargain, which they cannot do on the Internet. That is why they expect to already haveaccess to a fair price online in order not to lose any time. Promotional offers are more than welcome considering their purchasing behavior.
Visibility is the key
More than 90% of the 618 million Chinese internet users have an account on the social network platforms. When looking for reliable information the social networks like Weibo and Wechat are the first reflex of most internet users in China.
This is why being visible on these platforms is vital for foreign companies. Wechat and Weibo, the networks leaders both have Key Opinion Leaders. These KOLs are recognized for their knowledge on a particular subject on which they have an interest in and are sometimes followed by millions of fans. They can help the brands develop their image and popularity towards the Chinese public.
Buzz marketing is also a good way to quickly gain visibility on the Chinese internet where the word of mouth spreads fast. Chinese internet users like original content and storytelling often released using photos or videos. A video shared by Key Opinion Leaders is even better to create the buzz on the Chinese social networks. For example this video made by the company Fancy Cellar who sells wine online: it created a buzz with more than 30 000 views in one week, it was also shared more than 6000 times, there were more than 500 comments and 380 new fans.
A new trend has appeared in the past few years where more and more business has been made online, people now want to keep this real tangible. That is why more and more companies choose to bring online to offline. This phenomenon keeps the public interested and is a good way to interact with your online fans on the social networks by creating online competitions with offline rewards like wine testing. Also a good way to meet the consumers offline and.
Customers are easier to attract than to retain online. The wine offer is wide on the chinese e-commerce platforms and Chinese customers love trying new products and brands.This is why it is really important to make sure that the customer is satisfied with the product he bought.
A good way for that is to suggest him to leave a comment on the product that will help future customers to trust the product more. Developing the interaction between the company and the customers is a good way to make sure they will buy products again.
Work on Chinese e-commerce platforms
Chinese have their own social networks and e-commerce platforms. After adapting the company to the communication on Weibo and Wechat it is important to adapt to Tmall and JD.Com. Those are the chinese BtoC leader websites.
Most of foreign companies choose to open an online shop on Tmall because of its huge success, Tmall is trusted by Chinese online buyers. Burberry even opened its own online boutique on Tmall in April of this year.
A foreign company selling wines in China has great opportunities with the booming wine and e-commerce markets in China. However selling wine via the e-commerce in China requires being familiar with the behavior of Chinese online buyers. Success usually comes along with the above mentioned factors.