By: Chelsea Toczauer

All eyes are on China and its rapid development and growth- with its burgeoning population it’s becoming a hot market where you can win big if you can get in.  But the Chinese market is evolving.  Trends right now in marketing and accessibility to consumers show increasing growth of e-commerce not only in big cities, but in their small town counterparts as well.

McKinsey Global Institute finds that “Shopping malls are losing ground to the online marketplace.  While overall retail sales are growing, e-retail sales jumped by 50 percent in 2013”.

“For every 100 yuan spent online, 57 yuan is spent by people in third- and fourth-tier cities, greater than the national average of 39 yuan”. – China Daily

Foreign Policy briefly expounds on this point:

“In China’s massive e-commerce market of $26 billion, small-town residents, often looked down upon by their urban counterparts, are starting to demand attention from retailers and e-commerce companies.  According to a survey released in July 2013 by Taobao, small-town web shoppers spent an average of over $900 online in 2012, roughly $160 more than their big city counterparts.  The report says that about 30 million online shoppers live in small cities – a small number by Chinese standards, but one estimated to grow faster than e-commerce in urban areas.  Cutthroat competition among online retailers and logistics companies has driven improvement in delivery networks and better outreach to new customers in small towns, allowing them to enjoy the same deliver of Clinique lotion, Uniglo sweaters, and Vans sneakers once easily accessible only to city slickers’ doorsteps”.

As can be seen, this is an important emerging force in the Chinese economy, and something to be aware of going into the Chinese market with greater accessibility to consumers in the future.

Photos courtesy of Flickr’s leniners.