ByteDance’s Douyin sees 320% growth in online sales TechNode

The Chinese version of TikTok, Douyin, announced on Tuesday that its online sales had more than tripled for the year ending in April, an impressive growth rate for future e-commerce as other majors slow due to… an economic slowdown in China.

why is it important: Chinese short video platforms like Douyin and Kuaishou, backed by ByteDance, are rapidly taking market share from e-commerce giants like Alibaba, JD and Pinduoduo, thanks to their highly popular social content.

  • Douyin chose to announce sales figures and growth plans on the eve of China’s 618 shopping festival to boost a mid-year spending spree, local media in Chengdu reported.

READ MORE: 618 is no longer limited to e-commerce platforms

Details: Douyin’s gross merchandise value (GMV) jumped 320% year-on-year in the year ending April, as the company sold more than 10 billion products, the chairman says of Douyin E-commerce Wei Wenwen (in Chinese) at a Douyin e-commerce conference on Tuesday.

  • During the online meeting, Douyin renamed the concept of “interest e-commerce” to “comprehensive interest e-commerce” after rolling out the idea last April. The company hopes to highlight its ability to attract consumers through multiple channels such as short videos, live streaming, its search function, etc., Wei said at the conference.
  • The company didn’t give a specific GMV figure, but people with knowledge of the matter told Caixin that Douyin made over RMB 800 billion of GMV in 2021 and is expected to earn between RMB 1 trillion and 1.2 trillion this year. year. However, the company said the figure was “inaccurate” in response to Caixin.
  • Douyin E-commerce, which became a standalone business unit just two years ago, has grown rapidly by tapping into Douyin’s 600 million daily active users. Douyin generates over 200 million short videos and hosts 9 million live streaming sessions per month with the aim of converting user attention into sales.
  • Douyin’s Wei said she believes there are still plenty of opportunities in the industry and the platform aims to take more than 50% of the industry’s growing market in the future.

The context: Although they still hold the lion’s share of the market, Alibaba, JD and Pinduoduo are seeing slow growth as they face macroeconomic headwinds, regulatory challenges and pandemic measures.

  • Alibaba’s global consumer-facing businesses generated RMB8.3 trillion of GMV for the year ending March, remaining relatively stable from the RMB8.1 trillion recorded a year ago. In 2021, Pinduoduo’s GMV increased 46% YoY to reach RMB 2.4 trillion, while JD’s GMV increased 26.2% YoY for the same period. Kuaishou’s GMV increased by 78.4% year-on-year to reach RMB680 billion in 2021.
  • Douyin’s e-commerce sales have eclipsed its global sibling TikTok, which reportedly hit nearly RMB6 billion GMV in 2021.

Emma Lee is a Shanghai-based tech writer covering startups and tech events in China and Asia in general. We are looking for stories related to technology and China. Contact her at lixin@technode.com. More by Emma Lee