Alibaba kicks off its 13th annual 11.11 Global Shopping Festival

SHANGHAI/PETALING JAYA: Alibaba Group Holding Ltd today kicked off its 13th annual 11.11 Global Shopping Festival (pix), its largest festival to date with a record 290,000 brands participating, with an emphasis on sustainability and inclusiveness.

Alibaba Group chief marketing officer Chris Tung said over the last 12 years, 11.11 has showcased the tremendous consumption power of Chinese consumers and pushed boundaries for the global retail sector.

“This year’s festival marks a new chapter for 11.11. We believe we must leverage the power of 11.11 to encourage sustainable development and promote inclusiveness to consumers, merchants and partners across our ecosystem.”

Tmall is offering more than 14 million deals to over 900 million consumers in China. The festival will once again have two sales windows – the first will be from Nov 1 to 3, and the second will be on Nov 11, on the day of the main event.

Livestreaming will be a key consumer engagement mechanism for brands and merchants to build awareness and drive sales. Starting yesterday and throughout the festival, Taobao Live will feature 700 leading KOLs, celebrities and brand representatives in livestream sessions. In addition, Taobao will roll out a new feature for users to share their “shopping cart” items with friends and family, creating a more social shopping experience.

Tmall is taking action to promote “green” lifestyles this 11.11 by featuring a dedicated vertical to showcase energy-efficient and low-impact products, as well as issuing RMB100 million worth of “green” vouchers to incentivise shopping decisions that contribute to an environmentally-friendly lifestyle.

Alibaba’s logistics arm Cainiao Network will introduce package recycling across 10,000 Cainiao Post Stations in 20 cities to reduce the festival’s carbon footprint from Nov 1, the first day of the first sales period.

With increased use of green technology, Alibaba expects to further reduce the carbon emission per order during this year’s 11.11.

Ahead of this year’s 11.11, the Taobao app introduced an option for “senior mode”, a new feature designed to make the user interface more accessible for senior citizens. It offers voice-assisted technology, simplified navigation, larger font size and icons. The app homepage also offers games for elderly users to unlock special discounts for groceries, making the experience more engaging for the silver generation.