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2017 Chinese New Year Sales: Nanjing

In Nanjing, the local consumer market proved to be in robust health throughout the Spring Festival 2017 period, with abundant goods available and prices holding steady. According to the Nanjing Municipal Bureau of Commerce, the city's 120 key retailers - including supermarkets, shopping centres, department stores, home appliances retailers and catering outlets - recorded total sales of RMB2.03 billion (US$ 295 million) over the seven-day festive period.

Photo: Tourists celebrate the incoming Year of the Rooster in Nanjing’s Laomendong district.
Tourists celebrate the incoming Year of the Rooster in Nanjing’s Laomendong district.
Photo: Tourists celebrate the incoming Year of the Rooster in Nanjing’s Laomendong district.
Tourists celebrate the incoming Year of the Rooster in Nanjing’s Laomendong district.

Overall, figures from the Ministry of Commerce showed that, from New Year's Eve to the sixth day of the Chinese New Year (27 January-2 February 2017), the total takings of retail and catering enterprises across the mainland exceeded RMB840 billion, up 11.4% over the same period last year. Traditional New Year goods, eco-friendly food, seasonal clothing, gold and silver ornaments, smart energy-saving home appliances and several new digital products were among the best-selling items for 2017.

As part of the survey, staff at the HKTDC's mainland offices - Beijing, Dalian, Qingdao, Xi’an, Shanghai, Hangzhou, Nanjing, Wuhan, Chongqing, Chengdu, Guangzhou, Fuzhou and Shenzhen - selected a number of representative local shopping centres and monitored their performance before, during and after the Chinese New Year sales period in order to ascertain just how their respective local consumer markets fared this year.

The following summarises the diverse consumer spending patterns in Nanjing throughout the CNY holiday period:

According to the Nanjing Municipal Bureau of Commerce, the city's 120 key retailers - including supermarkets, shopping centres, department stores, home appliances retailers and catering outlets - recorded total sales of RMB2.03 billion (US$ 295 million) over the seven-day festive period. Drilling down further into the figures, the city’s shopping centres, together with its commercial complexes and 34 department stores, took RMB647 million over the seven-day period, a 14.45% year-on-year increase.

Of particular note this year was a dramatic rise in the level of food orders made online. Throughout the Spring Festival period, food orders via WeChat or through online group purchase schemes soared, with demand particularly heavy for New Year’s Eve dinners and meals for other festive occasions.

This year also saw JD.com, the popular E-commerce platform, introduce a 24-hour service in Nanjing and across Jiangsu province. This offered round-the-clock preparation and delivery of fresh food throughout the Spring Festival period. Similarly, JD Logistics maintained a door-to-door pick-up and delivery service throughout the holiday period.


The following table illustrates consumer spending patterns in four Nanjing shopping locales throughout the 2017 CNY holiday period:

Shopping centre

Golden Eagle Shopping Centre

Pengxin Aqua City

Xinjiekou Department Store

Yongli Shopping Centre

Grade

High-end

High-end

Mid-range

Low-end

Top-selling items (Price range: RMB)

Clothing and accessories (500-10,000)

Hats and footwear (500-5,000)

Infant and children’s products (100-2,000)

Clothing and accessories (500-5,000)

Hats and footwear (500-2,000)

Infant and children’s products (100-2,000)

Clothing and accessories (500-1,000)

Hats and footwear (500-1,000)

Home appliances (100-10,000)

Catering (80 per person)

Clothing and accessories (100-300)

Small home appliances (200-400)

Children's clothing (100-300)

Cosmetics (200 or less)

Toys (20-100)

New attractions

VR experience zone, overseas merchandise supermarket

Large Japanese drug store supermarket

First-line fashion brands

(including new additions from Japan, South Korea and Hong Kong)

Nil

Sales increase

15.60%

14.8%

19%

Not available

Average spend per customer (RMB)

2,500

1,500-3,000

1,100

500

Promotional tactics

(1)   "Crazy sale".  Clothing, skin care, daily necessities offered at extremely low prices. Promotions proved big crowd draws.

(2)   Discount upon purchase of specified amount or above; direct discounts.

(3)   In collaboration with banks, offered credit card discount upon purchase of specified amount or above, expanded sales target groups to boost sales.

(4)   Stepped up efforts to promote imported food sales in supermarket; New Year gift sets and lucky bag promotions organised to facilitate friends and relatives visits during Chinese New Year.

(5) Brand-new Golden Eagle New Year packaging (shopping bags, gift sets, shopping trolleys). Shopping malls furnishings (Year of Rooster theme) during the Spring Festival attracted customers for parent-child activities, photo-taking or just for enjoyment.

(6) Goods on sale on e-commerce platform - Jinyinggou - were mainly home appliances, household items, kitchen utensils, outdoor and travel, digital gadgets, cosmetics and skin care, maternal and child products. Provided door-to-door delivery before the Spring Festival, self pick-up from stores during the Festival.

(1) Parking discount upon purchase of specified amount or above.

(2) Staged performances of non-stop, variety shows including songs and dance, magic performances and sweepstakes on the water stage in the centre of the shopping mall during the holiday period, encouraging interaction with visitors.

(3) Gifts redeemed with VIP bonus points: high-grade, well-stocked thermos cup at RMB1.

(4) New Year blockbusters attracted large audiences; complimentary movie tickets offered to shoppers; group purchase promotions.

(1) Mall membership promotion with e-membership applications launched by shops, expansion of customer database and VIP members receiving cash redemption coupons.

(2) Discounts on New Year hot-selling products and brands. Discounts were said to be the highest of the year, with some brands even offering as much as 90% off.

(3) In collaboration with banks, offered cash vouchers or discount upon purchase of specified amount or above on payment by credit card.

(4) In collaboration with e-commerce platforms, launched Alipay, WeChat payment.

(5) Scan the character “Fu” (or Fortune) in-store with smartphone promotion to drive interest and increase footfall.

(1) Promotional campaign for stylish designer clothing, highlighting outfits worn by certain celebrities available for half price.

(2) Discounts upon purchase of specified amount or above for hot products. For slow-moving products, a purchase of RMB500 or above entitled customers to participate in lucky draws. Prizes worth RMB100-500, as well as candy gift sets were given away. In some stores, buy-two-get-one-free promotion was offered for hot-selling clothing items.

(3) Payment deals. Electronic payment was accepted. Payment via WeChat, Alipay, for example, may enjoy random reduction in payment amount of up to RMB99.

Sales highlights

(1) Brought in new designs during the Spring Festival, jewellery and clothing brands (new additions included Kate Spade, Furla and Michael Kors) stepped up promotional efforts in (26% off for Furla new arrivals), attracting large numbers of customers.

(2) By strengthening of co-operation with banks (Bank of China, China Guangfa Bank, etc), the purchasing power (of customers) greatly improved and sales growth accelerated.

(1) Featured parent-child merchandise.
Offers of baby merchandise coupons and discounts, coupons for children's playroom experience upon purchase of adult clothing goods.

(2) Mobile payment apps, including Apple, Android and WeChat were launched.

(3) Joint promotions with Holiday Inn, guests checking in the hotel get drinks, discounts and free parking at the mall in a bid to attract out-of-town visitors.

(1) Strengthened pre-event publicity via the internet (including via WeChat public account).

(2) Collaborating with e-commerce platforms to draw public interest;
expanding membership through mobile phones on the back of Spring Festival events.

(3) Super deals for hot-selling goods and brands to attract more customers, combined with shopping malls’ multiple discounts including cash, coupons, bank cards to cater to the spending habits of customers of all ages.

(1) Yongli Shopping Centre has no online sales platform. Offline, it sells mainly low-end, low-priced goods to meet the needs of low-end customers while stimulating customers’ impulse consumption by offering various discounts, 50% off drinks coupons.

(2) Some shops adopted "hunger marketing" strategy, restricting sales of hot-selling models to 30 units a day. Disappointed customers have to come back on following days to try their luck. While ensuring destocking, the strategy aimed to increase sales.

 

Nanjing Office

Content provided by Picture: HKTDC Research
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