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The Cross-Border Ecommerce Community (CBEC) enables Merchants, Payment Service Providers, ISOs and Acquiring Banks to access valuable content about mature and developing markets that can support strategic decision-making. Read more

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Mobile commerce and online shopper behaviour in China

Read below more about ecommerce growth, ecommerce sales and cross-border ecommerce in China

Detailed information to be found in the Cross-border Ecommerce Country Report-China

China is expected to become the largest ecommerce market in the world this year with USD 296 billion ecommerce value, USD 27.4 billion of which being via a mobile device. Ecommerce still only makes up 8% of total retail at present, but with 190 million online shoppers there is significant growth potential.

Total Population
- 1.4 billion
Age Breakdown
- 46.7% of the population in China is between 25 and 54
- Almost half of China’s population is atheist or non-religious (approximately 47%).
- 185 million people believe in Buddhism (13%) and 33 million have faith in Christianity (2.4%). 12 million people are Taoists (0.8%).
Urban Population
- 53%
Internet Penetration
- 45%
- 618 million
Mobile Penetration
- 92.3%
Tablet Penetration
- 39% within tier 1 - 5 cities, while tablet penetration in rural areas lags far behind.
- 10.3% share of the global tablet market.
Smartphone Penetration
- 71%
Online Shoppers
- 190 million
Ecommerce Sales
- USD 296 billion
Ecommerce Penetration
- 13.9%
Ecommerce CAGR (2008 – 2013)
- 116.5%
- iResearch expects a B2C transaction value CAGR of 40% between 2013-2016. Standard Chartered estimates B2C transactions will account for 49% of China’s online transaction value during the same period.
Mobile Commerce
- China’s mobile shopping value reached USD 27.4 billion (CNY 169.3 billion) in 2013, up 168.6% year-on-year. It is projected to exceed USD 161.8 billion (CNY 1 trillion) in 2017.
- Mobile commerce sales made up 9.1% of total B2C ecommerce sales, a figure that is expected to grow to 24.2% in 2017.
- 83.4% of Chinese internet users are accessing the internet via their mobile, more so than computers (80.9%).
- There has been a growth in the use of mobile payment services; users are up 25.1% to 38.9%.
Mobile OS platforms
- Android is the preferred mobile operating system in China, at 67.8%.

Cross-border Ecommerce Opportunities

• Overseas shopping via Alipay, the third-party payment platform under Alibaba, grew by 117%, compared to the 64.7% growth for domestic online shopping.
• Chinese cross-border ecommerce is made of mostly Chinese merchants selling overseas (90%).
• Chinese online merchants export mostly to the US (17.2%), UK (16.3%) Hong Kong (15.8%), as well as Brazil, India, Germany, France, Russia, Japan and South Korea.

Language as a Key Driver

• Standard Chinese (Mandarin) is the official language of China, spoken by 70% of the population.
• Chinese comprises of seven main dialects; Mandarin, Cantonese, Hakka, Wu, Min, Xiang, and Gan.

Read the complete text (including sources) about mobile commerce, online shopper behavior, ecommerce growth, ecommerce sales, cross-border ecommerce in China in the downloadable country report.