Alibaba Group Holding Limited (NYSE: BABA; HKEX: 9988) today officially kicked off its 13th annual 11.11 Global Shopping Festival (“11.11” or “Festival”) with an emphasis on sustainability and inclusiveness.
“Over the last 12 years, 11.11 has showcased the tremendous consumption power of Chinese consumers and pushed boundaries for the global retail sector,” said Chris Tung, Chief Marketing Officer of Alibaba Group. “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.”
This year marks the largest Festival to date, with a record 290,000 brands participating. 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 November 1 to 3, and the second will be on November 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 on October 20 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.
“Green” Lifestyle, Eco-Friendly Consumption Top Priority This 11.11
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 incentivize 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 beginning on November 1, the first day of the first 11.11 sales period.
With increased use of green technology, Alibaba expects to further reduce the carbon emission per order during this year’s 11.11.
Doing Good While Shopping
Supporting vulnerable populations is also a key theme this year. 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.
Consumers are encouraged to share their “Goods for Good” purchases with their friends and family, and Alibaba will make a RMB1 donation for every successful social media share.
Launched in 2006, Alibaba’s “Goods for Good” program enables merchants to donate a portion of their sales to charitable organizations of their choice, while consumers can support their favorite charitable causes through their purchases. The donations from this year’s Festival will provide support to three major beneficiary groups: elderly citizens living in solitude, “left-behind children” in remote areas and low-income workers.