Started in the 90s as an ‘anti-Valentine’s Day’ for Singles’, ‘Double 11’ or ‘Single’s Day’ in China has morphed into an online retailer’s dream.

Product Marketing Manager Katie Ash shares the trends we captured from our participating clients during the 11.11 sales.

Chinese internet giant Alibaba is responsible for turning a day when single friends would gather into the largest online shopping day in the world.

Launched in 2009, this one-day-sale has grown monumentally and is no longer confined to the Chinese market.

The hype surrounding this massive online event has seen many online retailers throughout South East Asia jumping on board. Alongside Singapore’s large marketplaces (Shopee, Zalora, Sephora, Amazon, and Ezbuy), independent ecommerce retailers have been promoting 11.11 sales.

In the lead up to Singles’ Day, some retailers held special advanced sales for VIP customers, revealing additional pre-sale coupon codes, and pushing wishlist functions to keep the hype levels high.

Even banks looking to cash in on a piece of the pie through transaction fees were partnering with retailers and providing customers with coupons for additional savings if they paid using the bank’s cards.

This year was the 10th anniversary of the 11.11 sales, and Alibaba quickly beat their previous record of $25.3 billion, pulling in sales of more than $30.8 billion in 24 hours.

When the clock struck midnight the race was on, and within only 85 seconds, they had made sales of $1 billion. With a weaker Yuan than last year, more sales were required to reach this goal, but this clearly didn’t hold them back.

This sets Single’s Day as the single biggest shopping sale event of the year globally, beating 2017’s Black Friday and Cyber Monday’s combined sales of $11.6 billion.

Looking at SaleCycle’s clients who participated in this year’s Singles’ Day, they too tracked massive activity increases leading up to November 11th. Here are some of the stand-out stats.

1. Online Abandonments Dropped

Many customers pre-fill carts in the days leading up to the sale, increasing rates of online abandonment.

This means there is less chance of that perfect pair being sold out once you arrive on sale day! However, our recorded abandonment rates dropped by an average of 9.66% for our participating clients on Singles’ Day itself.

With limited stock and prices set to only last the day, there was no time to dither over royal blue or navy, or time to price check elsewhere. Customers snapped up their selections to avoid disappointment.

2. Online Sales Increased (…obviously)

Our clients saw a huge traffic spike to their sites, with sales leaping by an average 2,983% on the day compared to the average daily sale rates in the week leading up to 11.11.

3. Average Order Values Soared

In spite of the massive price drops, the average order value actually increased.

Yesterday, SaleCycle clients saw order values average 84% higher than other days. One client (excluded from the previous average) was in a field of their own with order values increasing by 322%.

Unbeatable prices make customers buy a lot more than they otherwise would, stocking up on their favourite products, updating their wardrobe or getting a head start on Christmas gifts.

Instead of heading out with friends on 11.11, many in Asia stayed indoors hidden behind laptop screens; with smartphones and credit cards in hand, and contributed to the biggest shopping day of 2018.

Now all eyes are on the US and UK Black Friday sales kicking off tomorrow to see how they will stack up against the bargain hunters of the East.