What Chinese consumers choose to spend on is telling.
Do they spend on foreign brands or Chinese brands? Which categories are foreign brands winning? It is illuminating to see how the Chinese consumers prioritize their spending.
The Financial Times provides a nice snapshot of China’s consumption patterns through a series of charts.
For everyday goods, Chinese consumers generally buy Chinese brands. Interestingly, domestic brands still have a stronghold in cosmetics. For luxury goods, especially watches, smartphones, perfume, and autos, Chinese consumers prefer to buy foreign brands.
In the auto category, the Chinese indicated a strong preference for foreign cars. Top preferences are Volkswagen, BMW, and Audi. However, in reality, they buy domestic automakers.
For sporting goods, Nike has a lion share of the market. Bolstered by its high profile sponsorships with top athletes, Nike has a 44 percent market share with its closest competitor, domestic brand Li Ning, with 16 percent of the market.
In fast fashion, Chinese brands still have a deep foothold in this category even though foreign brands such as Uniqlo, Zara, and Jeanswest are becoming increasingly desirable.
For smartphones, Chinese consumers definitely prefer foreign brands such as Samsung and Apple, but Huawei is gaining market share at home and abroad.
image credit: meters/bonwe