Merely shopping online in China has become passé. Now, shopping on Taobao has become an integral part of many people’s daily lifestyle due to features such as instant messaging, product personalization, mobile integration, and popular product suggestions.
Because Taobao has such a huge customer base, it is able to track its customers’ preferences more extensively and tailor each user’s visit to their tastes, including which ads, products, and Taobao stores are displayed, according to Inside Retail Asia.
Ding Xi, Taobao’s user experience director, said the cultivating a “personality” is an important feature of Taobao.
In addition to a personalized online shopping experience, Taobao is giving online shopping a human touch with its instant messaging feature, Aliwangwang.
Known as guanxi, personal connections are an important aspect of shopping in China, and the popular Aliwangwang messenger allows users to chat before and after sale. Because payment is made through Alipay, payment isn’t complete until both sides are satisfied with the transaction.
Not only can Taobao customers communicate with sellers, but they can also browse customer reviews or look for new and exotic products through the popular products listing, which also allows shoppers to compare prices to retail stores.
Last but not least, with nearly 300 million Chinese mobile shoppers spending more than US$1.6 trillion last year, according to Enfodesk, mobile integration is an important part of Taobao’s platform. Nearly half of all online shopping transactions in China are done on a mobile device, and that number will continue to climb as mobile network speeds increase China-wide and as more retailers accept mobile payment through services such as AliPay.
image credit: taobao