Singles Day: Alibaba sales rakes in $75 billion during the 2020 11.11 Global Shopping Festival

Double 11: The Ultimate Chinese Shopping Festival
Source: Adsmurai

Eleven years in, and Alibaba Group, the e-commerce and media giant that created and grew 11.11 into the world’s largest shopping festival, is still delivering record results – and the innovations necessary to make them happen every November.

Alibaba’s gross merchandise volume on Singles’ Day from 2011 to 2020 (in billion U.S. dollars). Source: Statista

“Today we showed the world what the future of consumption looks like for brands and consumers. We are meeting the growing demand of Chinese consumers and helping them upgrade their lifestyles, while introducing new users to our digital economy from across China and around the world.”-

Fan Jiang, president of Taobao and Tmall.

By the time 11.11 ended at midnight on Monday, Alibaba had generated RMB268.4 billion (US$38.4 billion) in gross merchandise volume in just 24 hours, a 26% jump over last year’s numbers.

Smartphone and Live Streaming Boosts Sales

 Chinese mobile phone users spend an average of 6.2 hours per day in front of their screens, for a total of 1.8 days per week. Data was collected in 2019: 1.56 working smartphones were then registered in the country (for reference, the population of China is 1.4 billion). And as of March of this year, Chinese Internet users were spending 7.2 hours a day online. This is almost 2 hours more than in 2019 – 5.6 hours, and will affect sales on November 11.

Live streams on Taobao Live. Photo: Alizila

In recent years, streams from villages have been especially popular in China: they even have a separate tab on Taobao Live. Although all discounts are known in advance and for some goods you need to leave a deposit, on November 11 there will also be live streams. To do this, Taobao has hired 300 celebrity hosts, and 400 executives will also be promoting their products.

Luxury brands are buying in

While luxury brands have previously participated in Double 11, this year we’ve seen premium brands like Balenciaga, Cartier, Dior and Valentino launch campaigns where shoppers can score exclusive items and gifts with free installment payment plans (not a great combination). But don’t expect coupons or discounts from these brands, that’s for the affordable luxury brands like Coach and Michael Kors.

What the Chinese bought, you will learn from social networks

In the aftermath of Singles’ Day, some shoppers take to social media to share what they purchased or how much they spent. In 2019, among many Singles’ Day-related topics on Weibo, the hashtag #Double11WhatDidYouBuy (#双十一买什么#) gave readers an inside look at some consumers’ shopping carts.

Before and after the Shopping Festival.

Other countries are copying the shopping festival

Foreign e-commerce companies are following China with a November 11 sale. The success of Alibaba’s holiday has led to replicas in other countries. In Vietnam, the shopping holiday also takes place on 11.11. In Indonesia, there is already a holiday 12.12 – 12 December, and somewhere the sales are arranged by the “double nine” or “double ten”.
Alibaba itself is promoting its holiday abroad. Tmall Global this year helped midsize businesses bring goods to Chinese internet platforms if the companies did not have physical stores in the country. In Russia, shopping with Chinese characteristics is represented by AliExpress: by November 11, the advertising campaign even began to annoy users of the VKontakte application.

What about you? Did you buy something?


01. Alibaba Sells ¥372.3 Billion in Lead-up to Singles’ Day

02. First Post-Pandemic ‘Double Eleven’ Starts Strong — and Early

03. 11 Things You Need to Know About Singles’ Day


Singles’ Day (11.11) Alibaba| Retailing| E-commerce| Taobao| Luxury in China Social media| Fashion




  1. This article is very interesting and fully describe the double 11 Chinese Shopping Festival. Using lots of number and data from research resources to show the reader how much money and consumers involved. And the very interesting video to show and attract readers to open the link to find more interesting things about this shopping festival.


    • The statistics very clearly show how much Alibaba’s gross merchandise volume increased on Singles Day from 2011 to 2019. It is interesting to know if sales will continue to grow in the next year or if this will be the first year that they will decline.


  2. Hi, I am great to read this article about single day in Alibaba. I can learnt a lot about this specific event. It shows different factors influence the Alibaba gets these high sales.

    Suggest that the statistic could include the portions of different minor platforms in 11.11 total sales.


  3. This article clearly shows the newest information about 2020 Single Day in China, which is a great festival for online shopping and this has become a habit of Chinese customers. The statistics prove the quick growth in sales, and some new trends also emerge such as live streaming. In addition, the picture of “before and after Single Day shopping” is very interesting, because it reflects the real situation of current young people who purchase a large amount of goods during such festival and then suddenly don’t have much money as before. Although online shopping is convenient and has discounts, customers should establish an attitude of rational consumption.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, I think that such big discounts force people to buy more and more. Sometimes, much of what is bought at the discounts is not a necessary purchase.


  4. I am glad to see that Alina has such a detailed understanding of Double Eleven and sees the impact of Double Eleven on the lives of Chinese people in the article.At the same time, I also learned about the popular trend of Double Eleven in recent years and the changes in people’s buying habits.I also saw the rapid growth of China’s consumption power and its impact on the world. Good article!


  5. У особенно меня присутствует единственная слабость. Когда я сажаюсь просматривать все статьи на сайте, то завсегда задерживаюсь на работу.


  6. I was very surprised by the data in this article. We can see that the data has been increasing from 2011 to 2019. Think of all the things I bought on 11.11 that I haven’t used yet. I think this is also the situation of most young people nowadays. Because more and more live streaming platforms make most people fall into irrational consumption. This is something we should reflect on.


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