In the last decade, China’s economic growth greatly contributed to the rise in consumption of the Chinese population. With more purchasing power, they were able to modernize their house, buying the best and latest home appliances. As of 2021, China has the largest household appliances market in the world in terms of volume. Sales have skyrocketed during the Covid-19 lockdown as people had to cook and eat at home. But if there is one appliance that is especially popular in China, it’s the microwaves. With China’s digitalization that has spurred, e-commerce platforms are now part of Chinese people’s daily lives. Thus, companies selling microwaves online were able to increase considerably their sales.
Home appliances in China
Along with the economic development in the country, the household appliances market has been growing steadily in China over the years. For Chinese society, having a house/apartment is the most important criterion in one’s life as it represents the beginning of the family. Thus, many people are trying to buy houses, and most of the time need to redecorate them. Following some controversies about Chinese products, Chinese consumers were more cautious and preferred foreign brands. However, Chinese brands were able to stand amongst foreign competitors by using new technologies in their appliances.
For example, the most popular household appliances company in the world is from China: Haier (海尔). This shows that the Chinese market is one of the most competitive in the world, and the most creative in terms of innovations will be able to stand out and attract Chinese consumers.
China is the leading market worldwide in terms of household appliances, with revenues of US$61,574 million as of 2021. It is estimated that in this segment, over 48% of the total market revenue will be generated through online sales by 2023.
It is also worth mentioning that online sales have skyrocketed during the Covid-19 lockdown, and the growth is not ready to stop. The top home appliance brands in China are: Haier, Midea, Gree, TCL, Changhong, Skyworth, Hisense, Galanz, Meilin, Supor, and Xiaomi.
Microwaves in China
Since the popularisation of microwaves in China in the 2000s, almost all Chinese families have a microwave because of it is convenient, easy to use, and there’s no fire nor gas. In 2008 already, even before the rising use of e-commerce platforms, almost 80% of Chinese families living in first-tier cities had a microwave, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
As of 2021, you can see that microwaves are part of 64% of the overall Chinese population, before dishwasher and cooker/oven. Thus, the market has still a lot to grow, and this is an opportunity new brands have to seize. The leaders in the microwave industry in China are: Haier (China), LG (Korean), Midea (China), Panasonic (Japanese), Galanz (China), etc.
How to attract Chinese consumers?
A boom in the real estate market with rising purchasing power in China has resulted in the growth of the household appliance market. However, if you want to attract Chinese consumers, you will need to adapt to the Chinese market, and to look at their habits in terms of preferences and marketing.
Adapt your marketing campaigns
Advertisements are everywhere in China: on the bus, metro, train station, buildings, stores, commercial centers, bakeries, and so on. However, following China’s digitalization and its tech-savvy population, the best way to promote your business is to create social media accounts. You will then be able to advertise effectively your products in the Chinese market. To stand out, you need to know Chinese consumers’ tastes and adapt your product to their needs.
Create your community on social networks
Having an official account on social networks is mandatory when implementing your brand in China! Be careful, foreign app such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, etc are not available in China. You will have to use Chinese social media to promote your products and your company.
Introduced in 2011 by Tencent, WeChat is one of China’s top tech companies. With one billion monthly active users, it is the most popular messaging app in China but it also has a large ecosystem of services. Thanks to WeChat, you will be able to create H5 Brochures, promote your products through Wechat moments, etc.
Launched in 2009 by the Chinese technology company Sina Corporation (新浪), Weibo (微博) is one of the biggest social media platforms in China. As its name indicates (“micro-blog”), Weibo provides micro-blogging services and is often compared to Twitter. However, it has evolved into a microblogging hybrid with Instagram, Pinterest, Reddit, and YouTube over the years.
- Having a Chinese Website
As you probably already know, the majority of the Chinese population is not fluent in English. Thus, you will need to create a Website written in Mandarin Chinese. Don’t hesitate to put a lot of pictures of your products. The more your potential clients will be able to find informations about your products, the more they’ll be inclined to buy them.
- The importance of Baidu
Considered as the “Chinese Google”, Baidu is the most popular Chinese Search Engine in China and stands as the 5th most consulted website in the world. You can also advertise on Baidu with pay-per-click ads for example. It is essential to be on the first pages of Baidu. That’s creating a Chinese website is mandatory if you want to increase your rank on Baidu.
How to sell your microwaves in China?
E-commerce’s contribution to China’s domestic consumption of home appliances has grown to record levels these last few years. In fact, if you want to do business in China, you will need to use e-commerce platforms in order to be visible enough and attract potential buyers.
As home appliances in China are being sold both online and offline in China you can also have a brick-and-mortar store. You will be able to directly talk with potential consumers and show them how your products are different from others. But, in recent years there is an obvious shift of people becoming more willing to buy online, so you will also have to join e-commerce platforms.
It is also important to take into account Chinese consumers’ favorite online retail service attributes in order to give them the best consumer experience. Then, if they are satisfied, they will probably leave a comment about your brand, and it will increase the word-of-mouth for your brand.
Tmall is the most popular e-commerce website in China. Launched in 2008 by the giant Alibaba, Tmall is mainly focused on big companies. The process is long and fastidious, and the fees can be considered too expensive for smaller companies. Tmall requires its merchant to have high-quality products, as well as an online reputation in China before applying.
JD.com is Tmall’s main competitor, being another popular e-commerce website in China. JD.com has a wonderful catalog of products, from fresh grocery foods to high-tech and new technologies-related products. JD.com dominates the home appliance market, so it can be extremely rewarding to sell your microwaves on it. However, the process is kind of the same as Tmall, and it will be difficult for smaller companies to be allowed to sell on JD.com
Suning.com is one of the largest non-government retailers in China. It has more than 1600 stores covering over 700 cities of China and Japan, and its e-commerce platform, Suning.com ranks among top 3 Chinese B2C companies. It has many categories of products such as home appliances, 3C products, books, general merchandise, household commodities, cosmetics and baby care products, etc. Thus, if you want to sell your microwaves in China, you should also focus on Suning.com
Launched in 2003 by the giant Alibaba, Taobao shares some similarities with its brother Tmall. However, while Tmall is specifically for the biggest international companies, Taobao is more focused on smaller domestic companies. The fees are indeed much less expensive than on Tmall, and the price is also very cheap. It is easier for small companies to enter Taoabo than Tmall as the requirements are not as strict.
As a Digital Marketing Agency established in China for almost 10 years, we were able to break through the Chinese market, helping hundreds of foreign brands entering the Chinese market. Proud of the success of our collaboration over the years, we are constantly trying to help brands expand their activities in China. So, if you are interested or if you have questions about selling microwaves online in China, do not hesitate to contact us and we will reply within 24 hours.