Shopping Festivals in China: What is the 618 Shopping Festival?

Are you curious about the 618 Shopping Festival in China? The 618 Shopping Festival is a highly anticipated annual shopping event in China. It offers consumers incredible discounts, promotions, and deals across various online platforms and physical stores. The festival takes place from June 1st to June 18th and was initially created to celebrate the anniversary of, one of China’s largest e-commerce platforms. It has since expanded to include many other retailers.

During the festival, customers can find a wide range of products at discounted prices, including electronics, fashion, and home appliances. The event has become popular for shoppers to stock up on their favorite items or try out new products.

Whether you’re looking for a great deal or simply want to indulge in some retail therapy, the 618 Shopping Festival is definitely worth checking out.

In this article, we’ll provide a comprehensive overview of the 618 Shopping Festival and its significance in Chinese e-commerce. So dive in as we unravel the secrets behind one of China’s biggest shopping events!

How Did the 618 Shopping Festival Started?

The 618 Chinese Shopping Festival is an important event in Chinese consumer culture. It was created by, one of China’s top e-commerce platforms, and is named after June 18th, which is’s foundation day.

The festival aims to boost sales by offering steep discounts during this period. It was originally created as a response to a similar event by the rival platform Taobao.

Over the years, the festival has become a nationally celebrated shopping event that starts on June 1st and ends on June 18th.

It has had a significant impact on Chinese culture, influencing buying habits of Chinese people across various categories.

Today it’s not only about discounted sales but also involves various cultural activities promoting engagement between businesses and consumers making it the second most important shopping spectacle in China after Singles Day (November 11 or “1111”).

Key figures show a post-pandemic recovery highlighted by the resurgence enjoyed by the festival following Covid-19 peaks – an important data point that indicates China’s resilience amid global uncertainty.

Overview of the 618 Shopping Festival

An essential annual event, the 618 Shopping Festival has significantly etched its place in China’s e-commerce calendar. The festival, celebrated from June 1st to June 18th, offers an opportune time for brands to maximize sales and expand their consumer base. is known for its ability to create a successful shopping extravaganza that attracts a large number of customers year after year. It is considered the second-largest online retail shopping event after Single’s Day in November.

The festival has a significant impact on China’s e-commerce industry, with each iteration boosting consumer confidence and resulting in high sales on JD and other e-commerce platforms. However, not every year experiences the same level of success.

In 2022, both merchants and consumers felt that the festival was less exciting compared to previous years due to the limited growth witnessed by

How does the festival look?

The 618 Shopping Festival is a whirlwind of sales, promotions, and events that will leave your head spinning. Check out some of the exciting activities you can expect during this online shopping extravaganza:

  • Promotional campaigns: Get ready for an onslaught of eye-catching advertisements and marketing strategies aimed at capturing your attention. Brands pull out all the stops to showcase their products and lure you in with exclusive deals and massive discounts.
  • Exclusive deals: During the festival, e-commerce platforms offer jaw-dropping discounts on a wide range of products. Whether you’re in the market for electronics, fashion, or home goods, you’ll find unbeatable prices that are sure to make your wallet smile.
  • Livestream shopping: Livestreaming has become a popular tool during the festival, allowing brands to connect with consumers in real-time while showcasing their products. Tune in to watch influencers and celebrities promote their favorite items and take advantage of special offers available only during these livestream sessions.
  • Record-breaking sales: The 618 Shopping Festival is known for shattering records year after year. Keep an eye out for news headlines boasting about astonishing sales figures as consumers eagerly scoop up deals left and right.
  • Flash sales: Blink and you might miss them! Flash sales are a thrilling part of the festival where limited quantities of high-demand products are offered at incredibly low prices for a short period of time. Be quick on your feet to snag these unbelievable bargains!
  • Enhanced user experience: E-commerce platforms go above and beyond to ensure a seamless shopping experience during the festival. They simplify promotion rules, streamline logistics processes, and curate richer product lists so that customers can easily explore various options without any hassle.
lancome ads and flashipstore on JD - sell perfume online in China

Key Players and Performance during the 618 Shopping Festival

The 618 Shopping Festival features top e-commerce companies such as, Taobao, Tmall, and Pinduoduo. These key players have consistently achieved record-breaking sales figures year after year during the festival.

Here are brief profiles of some of the top e-commerce companies that dominate this event:

Founded in 1998, is one of China’s largest e-commerce platforms. It offers a wide range of products, including electronics, fashion, and home goods. With a strong logistics network and vast customer base, has been a major force during the 618 Shopping Festival.

Meat products on - animal feed


Launched in 2003 by Alibaba Group, Taobao is an online marketplace known for its extensive selection of consumer goods. It allows individuals and small businesses to sell their products directly to consumers. Taobao has played a crucial role in popularizing online shopping festivals like the 618 Shopping Festival.


Also operated by Alibaba Group, Tmall is another prominent player in China’s e-commerce landscape. Unlike Taobao, Tmall focuses on brand-name products and authorized sellers. Many international and domestic luxury brands have set up official flagship stores on Tmall to reach Chinese consumers during events like the 618 Shopping Festival and other shopping festivals.


Pinduoduo is a relatively new player in the Chinese e-commerce market that quickly gained popularity since its launch in 2015. It differentiates itself from other platforms by offering group buying deals that encourage users to invite friends and family to enjoy discounts together. Pinduoduo’s social commerce approach has resonated with younger consumers during the 618 Shopping Festival.

Sales figures and record-breaking achievements of 618 festival

The 618 Shopping Festival has seen consistent growth over the years, as reflected in sales volume., in particular, has experienced remarkable sales growth. By exploring diverse categories and catering to the ever-evolving consumer demand, both companies have managed to break records during the festival.

YearTop E-commerce CompanySales GrowthRecord-breaking Achievement
2022JD.com30%Expanded offerings with over 1,200 trending categories
2023JD.com6-8%National retail sales grew in May year on year as per the National Bureau of Statistics
2024Alibaba12.7%National retail sales grew in May year on year as per National Bureau of Statistics

Impact and Challenges of the 618 Shopping Festival

Impact on Chinese retail and global suppliers

The 618 Shopping Festival has had a significant impact on the Chinese retail industry and global suppliers alike. The festival, which is the second largest and most important shopping event in China, offers tremendous opportunities for businesses to boost their revenues for the year.

With the struggling retail sector in need of a revival, manufacturers and retailers are heavily depending on the 618 Shopping Festival to drive sales and customer engagement. Moreover, this mid-year sales extravaganza not only impacts domestic businesses but also holds great significance for global suppliers seeking to tap into or strengthen their presence in the Chinese market.

It serves as a test for COVID-affected shoppers in China, providing insights into consumer behavior trends and preferences that can help shape future marketing strategies. Ultimately, leveraging the popularity of this online shopping festival can prove highly beneficial for both local and international brands looking to thrive within the dynamic Chinese retail landscape.

Consumer behavior and market trends: changes in consumer buying habits due to the festival

During the 618 Shopping Festival in China, there have been notable changes in consumer buying habits. One significant trend is the growing awareness among Chinese shoppers about their spending habits.

Despite attempts by e-commerce platforms to attract cautious shoppers, many consumers are now more mindful of their purchases, especially during many shopping festivals (especially Singles Day, the biggest shopping event in China).

Another noteworthy trend is the increased spending in certain categories such as sports and outdoor products.

This festival has seen a surge in these areas, making them appealing opportunities for brands and online retailers that want to take advantage of this trend.

The 618 Shopping Festival is a time of both challenges and opportunities for businesses. Consumers have become more selective during this period and are looking for high-quality products at competitive prices.

Businesses need to recognize this trend and adjust their strategies accordingly to meet the demands of these discerning customers.

Competitive landscape: strategies used by successful brands

Here are some key strategies used by successful brands utilize during the 618 Shopping Festival and other Chinese shopping festivals:

Innovative Marketing Campaigns

Successful brands understand the importance of creating marketing campaigns that are tailored specifically for festivals. They utilize various digital marketing channels, including social media, influencer partnerships, and live-streaming, to engage with consumers in a unique and compelling way.

Exclusive Products and Bundled Deals

During festivals, brands often release exclusive products or create bundles of popular items to attract customers. This strategy aims to create a sense of urgency and exclusivity, which encourages consumers to make purchases.

Pre-Festival Hype

Successful brands understand the importance of generating excitement and anticipation for upcoming festivals. They achieve this by releasing teasers, sneak peeks, and pre-sale promotions. These strategies help to build brand awareness and ensure that consumers are eagerly awaiting their offerings.

Personalized Recommendations

Brands utilize data analytics to gain insights into consumer preferences and offer personalized recommendations during festivals. This helps improve the shopping experience for consumers and increases the chances of converting them into customers.

Collaborations with Key Opinion Leaders (KOLs)

Partnering with Key Opinion Leaders (KOLs) in China is an effective strategy for brands to expand their reach and establish credibility. KOLs can help promote products through various means such as live-streaming sessions, product reviews, and endorsements. This allows brands to tap into a wider audience and benefit from the influence and trust that KOLs have built with their followers.

Chinese Social Media and Kols - Tmall Live Streaming

Seamless Customer Experience

Successful brands ensure a seamless customer experience from browsing products to checkout and delivery. They invest in logistics infrastructure to handle high order volumes efficiently, ensuring timely delivery despite challenging circumstances.

Value-added Services

Brands offer value-added services such as extended warranties, free shipping, easy returns, or additional discounts on future purchases during the festival period. These incentives help attract customers and increase loyalty toward the brand.

Customer Engagement

Brands actively engage with customers during the shopping festival through social media interactions, customer service support, or interactive games and contests. This fosters a sense of community around the brand and encourages repeat purchases.

Case Studies

During the 618 Shopping Festival and other popular shopping festivals in China, many brands implemented successful promotions and campaigns to attract customers and drive sales. Here are some examples:

  1.’s Grand Promotion:, one of China’s largest e-commerce platforms, has introduced their Grand Promotion during the 618 Shopping Festival. They offer substantial discounts on various products, including electronics, fashion, beauty, and more. This promotion has been highly successful in driving traffic and generating sales.
  2. Tmall’s Super Brand Day: Tmall, another major player in the Chinese e-commerce market, organizes Super Brand Day events during the festival. This initiative allows selected brands to showcase their products with exclusive discounts and special offers. These well-curated events generate excitement among consumers and result in increased sales for participating brands.
  3. Pinduoduo’s Group-Buying Deals: Pinduoduo is known for its group-buying model where customers can team up with friends or family to get even larger discounts. During the 618 Shopping Festival, Pinduoduo offers exclusive group-buying deals on a wide range of products. This innovative approach attracts bargain-seeking consumers and drives significant sales.
  4. Livestreaming Campaigns: Many brands leverage livestreaming as a key marketing strategy during the festival. Influencers and celebrities host live broadcasts on various platforms, showcasing products and offering exclusive deals to viewers. Brands such as Xiaomi and L’Oréal have successfully used livestreaming to engage with consumers directly and achieve impressive sales growth.
  5. Cross-Platform Collaborations: Some brands collaborate with multiple e-commerce platforms during the festival to maximize their reach and exposure. By partnering with popular platforms like, Taobao, Tmall, and Pinduoduo simultaneously, brands can tap into different customer segments and increase their chances of success.
  6. Limited-Time Flash Sales: Brands often utilize limited-time flash sales to create a sense of urgency and drive immediate purchases. These short-duration sales, with deep discounts on popular products, generate high demand and attract a large number of customers during the festival.
  7. Innovative Marketing Campaigns: Brands have used innovative marketing campaigns to stand out from the competition. For example, Huawei launched a “Treasure Hunt” campaign where customers had to find hidden discount codes on their website for additional savings. This interactive approach not only created buzz but also increased customer engagement and participation.

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The 618 Shopping Festival has evolved into the second-largest and most important shopping event in China, offering huge discounts to shoppers from June 1st to June 18th each year. With its origins rooted in’s desire to boost e-commerce sales, the festival has become a significant indicator of consumer behavior and trends in the Chinese market.

Despite recent lackluster performance due to low consumer confidence, the future of the festival holds promise as it adapts to technological advancements and continues to attract both local and international brands seeking business opportunities during this annual retail extravaganza.

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