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As China has gradually stepped out of the shade dominated by the COVID-19 pandemic while other countries are falling into the swamp, the whole world is watching how China is doing now and making post-pandemic global forecasts based on China’s ups and downs economic trend at present. In today’s article, we are going to walk you through several aspects of China’s everyday activities, with these scenario you should be able to figure out how many insights are there to predict the future by simply looking at the current China.
People are buying from internet
The outbreak of coronavirus and the following mandated lockdown or voluntary home-stay has definitely altered consumption behavior across the country, both online and offline. In an article posted on TechNode, which analyses the data obtained from various private and publicly accessible databases, there listed and explained the actual purchasing changes behind this grand nationwide event. During the period, there are ups and downs when it comes to electronic sales while nonessentials see a tumble. People have shown great enthusiasm for shopping online in order to reduce person-to-person contact – even among elderly – sanitary products, immune system boosting supplements and drugs for chronic diseases are the categories they target.
Livestreaming e-commerce reaped the most benefit of this confinement trend. The first show streamed by the top Taobao livestreamer Austin Li of the Chinese new year drew over 16 million viewers, and “items were selling out before he could even finish”. The shopping spree stimulated the market and propelled tech giants pouring bigger money into the field – Alibaba, Pinduoduo and JD are developing and fortifying their livestreaming e-commerce sectors to rake it in. Influencers are experiencing huge gains too in viewership and engagement during the unfortunate moment despite a short-term financial loss due to the postponed promotion campaigns and cancelled deals by brands.
Food delivery platform is another winner in this battle. With people confining to homes and restricted from going out for grocery, Meituan has been riding the wave with its sales from fresh produce—vegetables, seafood, and meats—an increase of more than 200% year-on-year between Feb. 1 and Feb. 20. Alipay
“We welcome the other players to join us to accelerate the digitization and development of this industry which will benefit all participants in the ecosystem.”
Public activities are moving online
The Covid-19 outbreak is taking a great toll on the travel booking industry. Since the arrival of China’s epidemic came prior to the busiest travel season, the Chinese New Year holiday, major travel booking platforms including Trip.com, Qunar and Fliggy all received a hard blow as ticket change applications flooded in from users. They were meanwhile forced to revise policies offering free rescheduling and cancellations, in line with authorities’ advice, which discouraged people from leaving home. Trip.com is expecting a steep drop in its Q1 revenue falling by as much as half. Moreover, top executives within the company have voluntarily taken pay cuts to mitigate the attendant financial impact beginning in March, until the time when the situation recovers.
Though people are postponing their travelling plans due to the epidemic outbreak, China has seen a surge in online virtual tours which aims to entertain ‘screen visitors’ while avoiding large crowds and stop the contagious virus from spreading. Though many people welcomed the digitalization of museums and appreciated the customized features available across the app, there is still negative sound voiced by some art connoisseurs and tourism experts who see the trend as overhyped, arguing that it’s no substitute for the experience of visiting museums and galleries in person. Even Real estate sells is becoming adaptive, switching to online streaming. Because the epidemic has made people more reluctant to let strangers in their homes, compounded with the restriction for entering and leaving many apartment compounds, the real estate industry is experiencing a hard blow. Meanwhile, agents are seeking to survive and having moved online, trying all sorts to remain in contact with potential buyers via social media, online training classes, short videos, and livestreams. Hawking in this way can be hard which might not result in a high turnover rate, however, it’s more useful as a marketing tool and it does save time and energy from the staff.