It is rather common for overseas companies to register on Chinese eCommerce platforms expecting to enjoy some massive sales from the get-go thanks to their international reputation, only to be disappointed by their ROI. The reality on the field however is slightly different. Indeed, if it is true that Chinese consumers do like foreign brands, the reality is that they love foreign brands that are well-known in China and have a strong online presence in China.
Since investing in platforms such as JD eCommerce require many resources, better to get started on the right foot and avoid a common pitfall. In this post, we will introduce you to the best way to increase your conversion rate in China.
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JD Marketplace: what are its main features?
JD.com, also known as Jing Dong, is a massive B2C e-commerce platform, one of China’s leading eCommerce marketplaces. It acts as a platform for both direct sales and a marketplace. JD is well known for its global supply chain abilities and efficient logistics systems with a fully automated warehouse, artificial intelligence, and so on.
JD.com’s direct sales model is based on JD.com product sourcing from brands and suppliers and selling them directly to customers through the company’s website and mobile channels. This business model allows JD to do same-day delivery by sending products from warehouses directly to buyers. This model was initially more focused on key areas such electronics and home appliances, but has rapidly opened to many more product categories
While the JD marketplace enables well-established, reliable third-party sellers to sell high quality products directly to Chinese e-commerce consumers akin to the Tmall business model (china’s most profitable e-commerce company).
Selling on JD Worldwide: Cross-border eCommerce
Among its initiatives, we find JD Worldwide, which is a cross-border e-commerce platform that enables Chinese e-commerce customers to purchase products from other countries with the ease and convenience that they expect from JD.com.
This feature of JD is very useful because it offers international merchants the ability to begin selling and tap into the Chinese market even if they do not have a physical presence in China.
JD Worldwide is open to brands, franchisees, retailers, and traders that are legally registered outside China, selling products that originate from outside China. The collaboration with logistics services, such as DHL, means that the products are safely delivered to Chinese customers.
JD payment: online wallet – WeChat pay
Payment is also a fairly easy process for a foreign seller, or at least for someone with a registered USD bank account. In fact, only US dollar transfers are made for now.
For a foreign seller JD Worldwide will be the best choice, not only because just Mainland China’s registered companies can own .cn domains, but above all and as previously mentioned, all the Chinese data traffic is in the marketplace and not on individual sites.
Requirements to register as a merchant on the JD eCommerce Marketplace
Registration to sell on JD.com is not free. In fact, even if the brand is suitable, JD.com requires a deposit of $15,000, a fee of $1000, and in the case of the sale will take a commission between 2 and 5 %.
A recent collaboration between JD and Shopify offers Shopify merchants a new sales channel through the marketplace with an easier onboarding process and better foreign exchange rates. It’s a major step from JD to opening to smaller and independent businesses.
There are some other basic requirements that a foreign seller must possess in order to collaborate with JD.com:
- Be a brand owner or have a license
- Have a company established abroad with a trademark registration
- A track record of your products
- An operational history to demonstrate that you are not a fake foreign company
- A USD bank account
- A business registration
Registering on JD as a merchant sounds like a very complicated process if you are from a different country than China, but it should not be. We help you with regulatory and logistical barriers and any complexities related to opening a JD store.
How to acquire Chinese consumers on JD.com or any Chinese e-Commerce apps?
The second you open up a JD flagship store, the next step will be traffic acquisition and brand awareness. This is where our customized digital marketing strategy for China comes into play. Indeed, you don’t succeed in one of the most important eCommerce markets in the world by just snapping your finger. Let’s see what should be done:
Optimize your JD Store to appeal to Chinese Customers
Your store page will have to be adapted not only for the JD platform but also with Chinese customers’ tastes in mind. You must utilize a little more creativity and style than usual; however, always make sure your products are presented clearly on this site, so they can easily be seen by potential buyers!
- Lots of pictures
- Description as detailed as possible
- Video presentations are becoming mainstream
- Visible & Catchy Promotion
- Long Tail Keywords Title
Paid Advertising to drive traffic?
Yes, but not optimal, unless you follow important steps. Banner ads and PPC (Pay per click) are a great way to get initial traffic to your webpage or JD store but are not the ultimate solution for your acquisition strategy.
If you only focus on paid advertising, it is very likely that your traffic goes to waste. Indeed, without brand awareness, traffic from paid ads won’t translate into sales. One of the key elements of selling online in China is eReputation. Paid advertising is great to get traffic, but not so great to build trust with your target audience.
In order not to waste your resources, paid ads should be part of a larger promotion strategy involving, Baidu SEO, PR, Undercover marketing, KOls, and Social Media marketing.
Chinese Website + SEO to get visibility in the China market
Since opening a store on JD is not enough to break through in China, you’ll need as a very first step to create a webpage or website optimized for Baidu. From there, you’ll be able to get started with SEO, acquire organic traffic and build your credibility in China
Complete your SEO with Public relations and undercover marketing by animating discussion about your bra on a third-party channel.
- Have journalists recommend you to Chinese consumers
- Use forums & Q&A. (ex: Zhihu)
- Reviews Websites & social media (ex: RED)
Chinese Social Media to drive traffic to your JD store
China is the world’s most active social media market.
- 1.2 Billion people use WeChat daily. This app will help you to have close communication with your customers, and keep them updated on your brand thanks to the sharing of interesting content.
- For paid advertising, buzz marketing, and KOL marketing, Weibo is recommended. It’s a popular and open social media perfect to build a following and create brand awareness.
- Douyin & Kuaishou: Just as viral as Weibo, these two short video apps are perfect for targeted advertising and KOLs marketing.
- Xiaohongshu: For beauty and lifestyle brand. Reviews and lifestyle app.
- Livestreaming: all the social media mentioned above have their own live-streaming program that we recommended you start looking at once you have good brand awareness.
For JD merchants, WeChat also has the advantage that it belongs to Tencent, meaning that WeChat Pay is integrated into JD but also that JD links work perfectly on WeChat.
WeChat’s users can easily find the JD links via the WeChat search engine.
Don’t miss out on China’s massif Shopping Festivals
JD usually organizes events on a national scale, such as the Chinese New Year, in which the pages are embellished with the symbol of the year. Participation in these events will give you greater visibility.
Contact us, we know how to increase your ROI in China
With over half of retail sales happening online in China and still a huge potential for growth, you don’t want to miss the mark when getting started with your e-commerce strategy. Work with experts to remove barriers that are hindering your progress.
It is not a simple path to open your brand in Chinese e-commerce, but working with specialists in the market is the key to success. Our marketing agency is called Gentlemen, not by chance, we are true lords in the field of digital marketing. We offer you a strategic partnership and help you enter the world’s largest eCommerce market with:
- expedited onboarding & Store launch
- Smart Logistics
- Intellectual Property registration
- Market Research
- Marketing Strategy
- cross border commerce
- and son on
Contact us for more information!