A Seller’s Guide to maximizing revenue on 11.11 sale in 2023

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As the year draws to a close, mega-sale days get bigger and better. Combine that with the ber months in the Southeast Asian landscape; you have the perfect mix for amazing discounts, early holiday shopping, and consumers waiting to check their carts out. But that’s not all; a twin-date campaign like the 11.11 sale is a golden opportunity for e-commerce businesses to increase sales and build customer loyalty.

In 2020, the 11.11 sale, popularly known as the Singles Day sale, set a record by generating more revenue in sales than Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined. To give you a sense of the sheer grandeur of the 11.11 sale, e-commerce giant Alibaba’s gross merchandise volume during the sale day was approximately 85.4 billion dollars [USD], a whopping 6X the GMV of Amazon Prime day or 10x the consumer spend during Black Friday Sales in the United States.

With e-commerce platforms wooing customers through pre-sales and warm-up sales promotions, find out how e-commerce sellers can participate in the mega double-day sale and, in turn, reap profits.

What is the 11.11 Sale 

The 11.11 sale is one of the biggest double-day sales that falls on the 11th of November each year. It is also called the Double Eleven, Bare Sticks Holiday, or the Singles’ Day Sale. Ideally aimed at being a sales day where singles participate, the shopping festival broke away from exclusivity and now caters to discount and value seekers across the world. 

E-commerce brands all over the world gear up by slashing the rates of products on their online store in response to the sales frenzy the day brings in. From apparel and fashion to beauty, electronics, and home goods, shoppers eye out for the best deal to splurge despite tightening economic conditions.

If you’re an e-commerce seller in Southeast Asia, it’s impossible not to notice the shopping hype and frenzy the 11.11 sale in 2023 will bring. Let’s look at how the sale originated and where it is popular.

History of the 11.11 Sale

The history of the biggest double day sale in November day is quite a read. It dates back to 1993 when a couple of students from Nanjing University wanted to start a revolution that celebrates people who aren’t in a relationship. They chose the day, November 11, because it would resemble a bare stick, corresponding to the internet slang for men who aren’t married. These bare sticks, when placed together, gave them hope that singles would extend solidarity by participating in the anti-Valentine revolution. 

And they were right. Ever since its inception, the day for young people to celebrate their singledom was picked up by e-commerce giant Alibaba and transformed into one of the biggest online shopping festivals. The 11.11 sales day presents a unique opportunity for shoppers in Southeast Asia to plan their holiday shopping in advance.

11.11 Sales: A Global Phenomenon

Unlike other double day sales, the 11.11 sale’s popularity grew far and wide. It is no longer limited to China and enjoys the limelight globally. As the segment of consumers with disposable income is on the rise, the 11.11 sale gives e-commerce merchants the opportunity to present amazing offers catering to shoppers who are on the lookout for great deals.

The Single’s Day sale is popular in China and enjoys a massive reception in countries like the Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam, Taiwan, and Australia.

The role of e-commerce platforms in promoting the 11.11 sale

The role of e-commerce platforms in popularising the 11.11 sale cannot be ignored. The mega double-day sale achieved its cult status in China thanks to Alibaba, a popular e-commerce platform. The reach of the Single’s Day sale grew outside of China thanks to Alibaba’s subsidiary, Lazada, and e-commerce giant Shopee, which are extremely popular in the Southeast Asian region. 

Today, platforms like Shopee and Lazada continue to aggressively market the 11.11 sale. With individual platforms promoting their line-up of top e-commerce brands participating in the sale and each having its own pull of shoppers, the stage is set for 11.11. 2023.

Decoding Shopee’s 11.11 2022

Shopee wrapped up a successful Single’s Day sale on 11.11 2022. The e-commerce platform giant reported a staggering 6X growth in local sellers joining the popular sales day in Malaysia. This meant that the platform witnessed an uptick of 3.2 times more items sold by local Malaysian e-commerce sellers. The 11.11 Shopee Sale in Malaysia saw categories like home and living, health and beauty, groceries, and pet supplies emerge as the top categories. Shoppers preferred using Shopee’s e-wallet service as it recorded an uplift of six times more orders purchased through the medium.

The 11.11 Shopee sale in the Philippines also paints a similar victorious picture. The Shopee 11.11 2022 saw a record-breaking 4x sales for local sellers in the Philippines. Top categories of the 11.11 sale in 2022 were home and living, health and personal goods, and women’s apparel. Shopee Live in the Philippines saw more than 115 million viewers interacting with sellers and claiming flash deals. The e-commerce giant recorded 3x orders purchased through the native digital wallet – Shopee Pay.

Roundup of Lazada’s 11.11 2022

The interest in Lazada’s 11.11 sale grew stronger in 2022. The platform recorded an uplift of 124x sales in just 11 minutes after the sales day kicked off. Lazada’s shoppertainment, Laz Live, noticed that shoppers who participated spent 40 times more money during the campaign versus a regular day. The 11.11 2022 in Lazada also highlighted impressive shipping feats, with the 11th item being delivered at 23:11 in Thailand and the 1111th item delivered at 23:45 in the Philippines.

The 11.11 sale in Lazada also saw the emergence of Japanese and Korean sellers posing serious competition to local sellers. These brands enjoyed a whopping 65% increase in YoY seller count. Discounts continued to be a wow factor on Lazada as at least two out of every three brands offering the best deal to shoppers saw a 3x order increase. Beauty continued to be one of the most sought-after products. Indonesian shoppers purchased 9 tonnes of facewash while Malaysians caved into Laz Mall’s pre-sale beauty exclusives. Filipino shoppers happily purchased fragrances and deodorants, making it one of the top-ten purchases recorded on the platform. Singaporeans and Thai shoppers continued to purchase K-beauty face masks and moisturizers, highlighting the impact of the growing purchasing activity around beauty products online.

What to expect in 11.11 sales in 2023

Despite macroeconomic conditions and the aftermath of the pandemic, the interest in Single’s Day sales keeps growing bigger. The Single’s Day is in its 15th year ever since its first low-key organic celebration of singledom. So, what lies in store for the 15th edition of the Single’s Day sales? Let’s find out:

Shoppertainment will draw shoppers: Trying to mimic the success of what TikTok has achieved, platforms like Lazada and Shopee will seek to draw shoppers through their live streaming sessions. E-commerce sellers can tap into the live shoppers by generating buzz around their Single’s Day sale lineup, announcing flash deals during live streaming, and promoting these sessions outside the e-commerce platforms on different social media channels. 

Rise of digital wallets: Catering to today’s generation of shoppers, Both Shopee and Lazada’s native digital wallets continue seeing high adoption. With exclusive discounts on orders purchased through ShopeePay and LazPay, the 11.11 sale is another reason for shoppers to use these digital wallets. Integrate that with native buy now pay later schemes, e-commerce sellers on the platform have access to shoppers who otherwise would skip the sales day, citing low funds.

Shipping is an incentive to shop: The rising customer demands and constantly decreasing fulfillment window bring the focus back on shipping. In addition to discounts, shoppers today want their products faster. Express shipping times and free shipping are decisive factors when it comes to online store conversions – they are a reason for shoppers choosing to buy from you or go with another seller who could offer faster shipping. In addition to faster shipping, free shipping motivates shoppers to add more items to their shopping carts. By setting up minimum qualifying limits, shoppers tend to add more products to their carts to avail the benefit, increasing their average order value during an important sale like the 11.11.

Local seller, global reach: The interest in going local and buying local has taken the Southeast Asian region by storm. Shoppers continue to remain loyal to homegrown brands. With the online e-commerce industry picking up pace, more sellers are transitioning their stores online, amplifying their reach and catering to the growing demand for locally produced products. With the Single’s Day sale popular across the Southeast Asian region, shoppers across the borders in surrounding countries use platforms like Shopee and Lazada to make purchases. Local sellers can comfortably cater to demands within the community and sell across the border in one go.

How to Prepare Your E-commerce Store for the 11.11 Sale

The Single’s Day or the 11.11 sale guarantees an increase in the shopping frenzy. With discounts, promotions, bundles, and prizes up for grabs, shoppers will flock to the online store. As an e-commerce seller, you need to ensure that your store is ready to tap into the craze and turn it into a meaningful sale. 

Create your 11.11 product lineup

Identify the products in your inventory that will be featured across the platform’s campaign announcements. Remember to choose items that would catch your shopper’s attention and pull them towards your store.  Here are a few ways to identify what products to highlight for the upcoming Single’s Day Sales:

  • Look at historical sales insights to identify what sold more during the sale last year.
  • Tap into recent insights like the last seven days and last 30-day sales to see the currently trending products in your store.
  • Identify top-selling products in your category to find out what customers are currently buying.
  • Find out the top-selling product based on the e-commerce platform. Top-selling products on Shopee and top-selling products on Lazada may vary based on customers who frequently shop on it.
  • Surface all the slow-moving and off-seasonal products in inventory that otherwise would incur high holding costs.
  • Identify holiday items that shoppers will look forward to purchasing during the gifting season.
  • Find products in your inventory that are nearing expiration to go out at a marked-down price during the sale.

Strategize pricing and offers

Once you’ve identified products that will go on sale, the next step is to strategically price them to capture enough eyes and convert them into sales. With thousands of e-commerce sellers battling it out on the 11.11 sales, pricing, discounts, and offers are going to be key differentiators. Some of the tips to guarantee more sales during the upcoming Single’s Day Sales include: 

  • Compare what your competitors offered during the last sale through price-tracking apps
  • Glean into popular product bundling techniques to pair products and cross-sell them during sales.
  • Participate in Shopee/Lazada’s marketing initiatives like discount and cashback programs to offer better value to shoppers.
  • Use the in-app store’s pricing calculators to estimate expenses and compute accurate markdowns that don’t hurt your margins.

Pre-sale prerequisite for 11.11:

As the sale draws closer, you will have to review your online store. You need to get the look, theme, content, and inventory in order. Here are some basic to-dos ahead of your store’s big 11.11 sale:

  • Ensure the product listing for the 11.11 sale items is updated and reflects the latest pricing. 
  • Look at store design and update banners to let shoppers know that you’re offering deals during the 11.11 sale.
  • Stock sufficient products based on the forecasted demand and keep buffer stocks in place to avoid out-of-stock situations. 
  •  You may experience at least 10-20x volume in shoppers, so prepare your killer deals to cater to the increased traffic.

Marketing and Promotion for 11.11

Both Shopee and Lazada let sellers nominate their products for 11.11. The better the deal is, the greater your chance of getting featured on their campaigns. This means more eyes on your online store even before the sale starts. But what can customers do ahead of the sale to grab more attention that could translate into sales?

  • Run paid marketing campaigns across different platforms where your customers are active, such as Facebook, Google, and Instagram, among others.
  • Join in-app category memberships to get featured and attract shoppers to your online store.
  • Enable in-app gaming features that will encourage shoppers to stay longer and discover more products to shop. This gives your store a chance to get featured on the sale day microsite of the e-commerce platform.
  • Utilize in-app broadcast messaging features to target buyers and entice them through exclusive 11.11 deals, offers, and discounts.

Level up Fulfillment this 11.11 Sale

As shoppers flock to your online store to grab the best deals on the 11.11 sales, fulfillment is a game-changer. Incentives like free shipping, express shipping, and returns management may require a lot of time, effort, and commitment when handled in-house.  With a reliable third-party logistics provider, you delegate fulfillment to experts and focus on increasing sales during 11.11. Apart from the expertise, let’s understand why partnering with a 3PL like Locad can do you more:

Flexible Infrastructure:

Mega day sales like the 11.11 banks on great deals and discounts. For e-commerce sellers, warehouses bring with them high rents, labor, and operational costs. With flexible infrastructure for inventory and storage, you get to decentralize inventory without costly overheads. This means offering better deals that do not end up hurting your margins.

Faster Fulfillment:

Shorten the timeline between buy and delivery. With strategically placed warehouses closer to customers across the Southeast Asian region, you ensure that products are dispatched the same day and get delivered quickly. Faster fulfillment ensures your customers remember you for lightning-speed fulfillment and choose to purchase from your store again.

Scale as demand peaks:

With a sales day like 11.11, demand for your products surges thanks to the increased shopping activities. Flexible warehousing offered by Locad ensures that we give you the assets you need to handle this surge without running out of space to store your inventory. And post 11.11, when sales normalize, pick up right from where you left off.

Reliable order tracking and returns:

Get periodic updates and monitor the fulfillment process in real-time. With Locad, ensure your customers can track their order right from the order placed to the most anticipatory “out for delivery” phase. Avoid overwhelming your customer support team with order tracking requests during peak sales periods. With Locad, ensure you have proper returns handling and management in place to service returns requests from your customers. Our last-mile courier partners ensure products get picked up and returned to the warehouse in a timely manner.

Lazada or Shopee? No more a choice:

With Locad, you don’t have to choose between Lazada or Shopee anymore. Make multi-channel selling a breeze by syncing your online store in one hub and processing your orders for fulfillment automatically. Streamline your entire fulfillment journey and reach more customers across different platforms and different regions like a pro.

The Single’s Day sales may be another monthly double-day sale for any e-commerce seller. However, the largest online sale event manages to lure shoppers across Southeast Asia and Australia. With e-commerce platforms promoting too-good-to-be-true discounts, promotions, games, and other shopping incentives, the pressure is on e-commerce sellers to jump on the bandwagon and offer great deals that don’t take a heavy toll on their profits. 

With the right strategy, tools, resources, and reliable fulfillment services, e-commerce sellers can make their mark during the 11.11 sale to reach more shoppers and turn it into their biggest revenue generator of the year. 

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