This year International Luxury Watch Brand have great prospect to sell watches in China.

According to the results of the latest WorldWatchReport™ by Digital Luxury Group (DLG), the web traffic from China visiting luxury watch websites, is gradually exceeding as compare to web traffic generated from the leading U.S. market.

The rise in web traffic from China indicates a potentially huge group of digitally savvy consumers with a keen interest in luxury watches.

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rowing Interest of Chinese consumers in Luxury Watches

Market Overview of Watches in China

Taste of Chinese consumers is evolving with growing international tourism. Chinese consumers now prefer better-quality products in life and have developed an eye for finer luxury items. Among other luxury items, Chinese consumers have become very demanding about types of watches they prefer. From old-style watches offering practical functionality, in China, watches have gradually evolved into special consumer goods that are trendy and ornamental and offer brand value. Watches sold in Chinese market mainly fall into three categories:

  • Work/business watches: Chinese consumers prefer wearing expensive watches to work depicting their status symbol. They wear luxury watches to attend important functions, but may also wear them during leisure hours. Usually high-income male consumers prefer business and work watches.
  • Casual fashionable watches: Chinese young female prefer casual, fashionable watches. These are trendy watches and usually have very chic and slick design. These watches mainly serve ornamental purposes like necklaces and bracelets. Chinese girls prefer wearing these watches during leisure hours. Sometimes they are also worn to match business outfits.
  • Sports watches: Chinese consumers have been interested in sports events more than ever before. This group mainly consists of young Chinese, students and sports enthusiasts as main consumers.

Other types of popular watches include antique watches, multi-function watches and cartoon watches.

Sell Watches in China on E-commerce platforms

There have been several recent examples of prestigious watch brands entering Social E-commerce platforms of China to provide Chinese customers with easier and seamless digital experiences. Brands such as Bulgari and Jaeger LeCoultre have appeared on China’s social media platforms and introduced Chinese online influencers (KOL) to attract and reach Chinese users by leveraging their marketing campaigns to attract young customers.

2017 is a great year for watch industry

According to latest predictions, 2017 is a great year for watch industry providing innumerable opportunities in mainland China. On the other hand, Chinese customers are extremely tech savvy, this setting has provided International watch brands strong and favourable reasons to enhance their digital presence this year in China.

International watch brands can meet the need of Chinese consumers by strengthening their digital elements and aligning their marketing campaign to the expectations of the consumers. To successfully achieve this International watch brands, need to penetrate Chinese market on local level by triggering their psychological and digital touchpoint.

Solutions to Sell Watches in China E-commerce Market

There is enormous opportunity but due to cultural barriers, language difference and strict e-commerce platforms policies it gets challenging for International brands to enter Chinese market. However, there are two vital approaches to enter and be successful on Chinese E-commerce platforms. Branding and presence on well-known e-commerce platforms.

Branding is Everything in China

Before targeting Chinese consumers, it is advisable to understand the culture of China’s closed ecosystem. Several International brands experienced negative impact on the brand image when their marketing campaign went wrong. Therefore, first step after market analysis is Branding!

“You need to ensure that your local campaign is consistent with the brand image but also relevant to local consumers,” said Louis Houdart, founder and global director of branding and design.

Therefore, it is helpful to partner with local digital agency as it is skilled to find a “sweet spot” between the International brand value and preference of Chinese consumers.

Presence on Chinese E-commerce Platforms

To enter e-commerce market of China International brands must learn policies of following digital platforms.


TMALL holds the biggest market share in e-commerce market of China at 57%. It mainly focuses on premium brands. This characteristic makes TMALL most expensive e-commerce marketplace in China. It provides an opportunity to International brands to open exclusive online stores and directly sell products to Chinese consumers without being physically present in China.

TMALL has invitation-only policy where only qualified international brands can either be invited to join or can apply through a local marketing agency. For more information on how to sell International products through TMALL, please contact local digital marketing agency.

E-commerce via

JD is China’s largest online direct sales company. It relatively has less market share than International companies can open individual online stores on and brands are permitted to import food, beverages, apparel and shoes from overseas. JD’s cross-border service enables suppliers to sell directly to Chinese consumers without a local presence. is less expensive than has a zero tolerance policy for counterfeit products.

Haitao Web Interface?

Sell Watches in China: An example of Haitao platform selling luxury watches in China

There are several cross- border websites that cater international brands. Chinese consumers prefer buying imported food products from Haitaos. To learn about which Haitao is suitable for you brand please contact local marketing agency catering International brands.


Taobao is owned by Alibaba Group. It offers largest C2C e-commerce marketplace in China. Taobao allows registered or non-registered businesses to sell directly to consumers. Establishing a store on Taobao is virtually free but the online marketplace is ruled by small sole sellers who compete fiercely on price and honesty and authenticity is an unwritten rule of their trade ethics. Sellers with low budget and low quality products opt for this platform.

WeChat E-commerce

WeChat is engrained in lifestyles of Chinese consumers. It is all-in-one-app which integrates social e-commerce seamlessly. There are three types of service accounts available for promoting business on WeChat.

Wechat Store

Sell watches in China: Sworski promoting watches on  WeChat Store
Sell watches in China: Sworski promoting watches on  WeChat Store
Swarovski is the first watch and jewellery brand to enter China’s E-commerce platform to leverage the technology of Wechat mini programs and complement both their social and retail activities.

WeChat Service Account is considered the most suitable for business and organisation that aspire to access advanced WeChat Official Account. Service accounts allows more APIs (Minisite) and companies are enable to build their own store through which it can manage its products, orders, display of its products, and customer complaints. For more information on how to manage Wechat store, International companies are advised to partner with expert Digital Marketing Agency, that is willing to apply for an Official WeChat Account on behalf of the international company.

ROI = E-COMMERCE.  This strategy has made our customers extremely satisfied and proved us as a reasonable choice for them.

Would you like to sell watches in China’s E-commerce market, and learn about the ideal strategy? You can reach us for friendly discussion and learn about your brand’s prospects in Chinese E-commerce market. Our Digital Marketing agency provides, international brands with tools that are optimal to unlock this enormous market to earn their full potential and multiply sales with millions of users. If you are interested in exploring Chinese Digital E-Commerce platforms, reach out to us for a customised advice.

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  1. Very good article, most of Switzerland Brand should start their eCommerce business but like usually they are too slow for the Chinese Market and will miss the opportunity to be seen as innovative and will target too late the young Rich Chinese

  2. Hi,
    I’m looking to cross boarder sell Swiss watches, can you tell me what is needed to do so please?

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