MANILA, Philippines - The online sales for baby care products has been growing faster in China in the last two years than in developed countries in Europe, a global market research company said.
GfK baby care panel said that in 10 key Chinese cities it tracked -- including Shanghai, Beijing, and Guangzhou -- sales performance in 2011 grew 16% to US$425 million, with online sales for baby soothers and feeding bottles registering significant spikes.
A two-year tracking of online and offline sales of baby care products covering clothing, feeding and hygiene tools, safety equipment, transportation, furniture, and toys in retail outlets commenced in 2010.
"While total Internet sales accounted for only around 7% of the total market value in 2010, penetration rate escalated to 10% the following year. This figure is likely to deepen in 2012 with GfK foreseeing earnings derived from online retailers to make up over 14% of the overall baby care market worth," it said.
GfK attributed turning to the Internet as a platform to purchase such products to rapid urbanization in China, as well as fast rising personal income. It also noted that China’s productive population is giving birth to approximately 17 million babies annually.
Lower price has been noted as a key factor why the online market has been growing at a faster rate than the offline market. For instance, the price of a baby bottles sold online averages at $7.10, which prove more attractive than those retailing at departmental stores and baby care specialists which averaged at $10 and $7.90.
"It is interesting to highlight the difference in buying behavior across various regions tracked by GfK,” commented Mr. Walter Leung, managing director of GfK Hong Kong.
"The online buying phenomenon for baby care products is definitely more apparent in China compared to the European countries of Germany and France where consumers still prefer to make their purchases at brick and mortar stores," he added. - Rappler.com
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