6 Ways Chinese Tourists are Buying Machines
1. They do research
I spent several years living in Taiwan. While I was there, I noticed they had a ton of bookstores. These bookstores were even popular hangouts for young people. The travel section was always loaded with people and books to choose from. People in China take travel research seriously. There are some really popular websites for them to rely on, such as “Mafengwo” and “Qiongyou”. Both of these websites are focused on travel notes instead of organized guides. So whether people are using websites or books, they are researching, which means there’s a huge opportunity to promote products to the market during the research phase.
2. They spend a lot
Chinese government tourism statistics reveal that outbound tourists spent a record $164.8 billion overseas in 2014. The research they did before arriving at their destination has made them focused. They know what they want and where to get the best price. Afterall, they can’t get everything in China. If we consider the price of luxury products like handbags or high-end health supplements, these are often much more expensive in China than elsewhere. For this reason, Chinese consumers load up when they go abroad.
3. They have a gift giving culture
Every culture has an element of gift giving. The Chinese just take it very seriously. Like, super seriously. Like I said before, I live in Taiwan for several years. While there, I received more gifts from random people than I had ever received in my entire life before that! In western culture, we buy gifts mostly around Christmas and birthdays. In Chinese culture, there are many more opportunities to give gifts. It’s also normal to give gifts to colleagues or clients. So there’s a need for Chinese consumers to “stock-pile” gifts to be prepared!
4. They are efficient shoppers
Chinese consumers are highly focused shoppers. They don’t wander aimlessly, they visit efficient shopping locations strategically. The following are the traditional places that Chinese tourists enjoy shopping:
- Duty-free shop (81.55%)
- Large-sized department stores (69.65%)
- Brand franchise stores (51.29%)
- Discount stores/outlets (37.73%)
5. They are buying a wide range of products
Chinese consumers aren’t buying everything, but they are buying a wide range of products. Chinese tourists are predominately buying the following types of products:
- Souvenirs: Local, specialty products. Often bought in large amounts and given as gifts.
- Daily needs: High-end health products, high-quality products that can’t be sourced in China.
- Fashion brands: Bags, shoes, perfumes, apparel, accessories from fashion brands such as Dior, Prada and Coach are highly favored by Chinese women. Aside from this, they also like watches, jewelry, luxury wines, and cosmetics among other things.
6. They are spending more on foreign products
We already know that Chinese e-commerce shoppers are spending 176% more on foreign products compared to domestically produced ones. The same logic can be applied to Chinese tourists – except when they are buying luxury products that can also be purchased in China. What this means is that Chinese tourists are willing to pay top dollar for what they perceive to be high-quality products that cannot be found in China.
The research definitely shows that Chinese tourism is creating a massive opportunity for retailers abroad. The real question is whether or not they have adjusted their marketing strategies to capture the business of these high-spending consumers.
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