School re­turn leads to shop­ping bo­nanza

China Daily (USA) - - BUSINESS - By OUYANG SHIJIA ouyang­shi­jia@ chi­nadaily.com.cn

As back to school shop­ping is of­fi­cially un­der­way, tens of mil­lions of col­lege stu­dents have be­come the driv­ing force in the ex­pand­ing shop­ping mar­ket, es­pe­cially the on­line one.

Liu Yang, a se­nior at Hu­nan Uni­ver­sity of Chi­nese Medicine, re­cently bought a new iPhone 6s from JD.com Inc’s e-shop, China’s sec­ond largest B2C on­line plat­form.

“I need to be bet­ter pre­pared for the new se­mes­ter. And a brand new smart­phone will be a perfect bonus for my next jour­ney, like look­ing for jobs.” said the 22-year-old Liu.

For Liu Yu­jing, a 20-year-old junior at the North China Uni­ver­sity of Tech­nol­ogy, back to school sea­son is one of the best times for shop­ping.

“My par­ents gave me more money for the new se­mes­ter. So, I bought coats, T-shirts, trousers, shoes, make-up and other per­sonal stuff, to­tal­ing nearly 11,000 yuan ($1650).

As an in­te­gral par­tic­i­pant in the back to school shop­ping sea­son, e-com­merce plat­forms have be­come the “main bat­tle­field” for on­line shop­ping. JD.com launched a onemonth pro­mo­tional fes­ti­val, from Aug 11 to Sept 12, for the back-to-school sea­son, in­clud­ing cell­phones, dig­i­tal prod­ucts, com­puter of­fice sup­plies, books, au­dio and video prod­ucts, plus items for travel and daily life

China’s big­gest e-com­merce plat­form, Taobao, an­dother on­line plat­forms also of­fer var­i­ous pro­mo­tional ac­tiv­i­ties, such as pro­vid­ing dis­counts or free main­te­nance for the pur­chased goods.

“Com­pared to pre­vi­ous years, col­lege stu­dents’ cur­rent on­line spend­ing has in­creased a lot, and there will be a peak of con­sump­tion be­fore the ‘Dou­ble Eleven’ on­line shop­ping fes­ti­val,” said Chu Shiyuan, mar­ket­ing gen­eral man­ager of 3C (com­puter, com­mu­ni­ca­tions and con­sumer elec­tron­ics) busi­ness de­part­ment at JD.com Inc.

Chu added that, among the 3C cat­e­gory of com­modi­ties, stu­dents usu­ally bought com­puter of­fice sup­plies, mo­bile phones, dig­i­tal prod­ucts and books.

Ac­cord­ing to JD’s sta­tis­tics, dur­ing its “618” on­line shop­ping fes­ti­val, the num­ber of pur­chased goods by col­lege stu­dents on JD’s e-shop grew 300 per­cent from last year, with the sales value up by 500 per­cent. The data also show that col­lege stu­dents pre­fer to pur­chase com­modi­ties in the cat­e­gories of beauty & health, food & drinks, com­puter of­fice sup­plies, books and mo­bile phones.

Xiang Li­gang, tele­com ex­pert and CEO of the in­dus­try web­site cc­time.com, said that Septem­ber and Oc­to­ber are peak sea­sons for sales, and the to­tal sales for cell­phones and com­put­ers will grow sig­nif­i­cantly higher dur­ing that time, due to the back to school spend­ing.

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