Survey shows that young people will only buy what they need during upcoming Double 11 shopping spree

Alibaba CEO Daniel Zhang kicks off the celebration of the 10th Nov 11 Shopping Festival in Beijing, Oct 19, 2018. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

70.4 percent of respondents said in a recent survey that they would only buy what they need in the upcoming Double 11 Global Shopping Festival, an online promotion held on Nov. 11 every year across China, with many adding that shopping festivals are merely a marketing tool to sell more products.

The survey of 1,969 young people aged between 18 and 35 was conducted by the social investigation center of China Youth Daily.

As indicated by the survey, many young people said they would remain rational towards various sales and promotions.

For example, 68.1 percent of respondents consider the cost performance of a product and their own finances before purchasing, while 58.3 percent consider a product’s practicability and whether it is essential.

“I think my expenditure should fit my financial situation. When I’m financially stable, I buy products with the best possible quality. I attach great importance to quality, so I’m not stingy if a product is necessary,” said Zhu Di (pseudonym), a student from China Medical University.

Moreover, 45.9 percent of respondents agreed that liking a product’s appearance is essential, 32 percent of those surveyed are more inclined to part with their cash if a product is trendy, though only 17.9 percent said it’s vital for the product to be branded.

Consumption habits of young people differ between the east and west, urban and rural areas, and among different groups of people in China, explained Ding Jianchen, a professor at the University of International Business and Economics in Beijing, adding that these differences are influenced by a variety of factors including profession, income and family.

Regarding the flourishing promotions both online and offline across the country, 70.4 percent of young people surveyed consider them mere marketing methods, and expressed that they would only buy what they need, while 50.8 percent of young people admit that it’s difficult not to impulse buy when met with such big discounts.

41.2 percent of respondents expressed that there are now too many shopping festivals, and 8.2 percent think there’s no difference between such festivals and regular days.

Xue Haibo, a professor of East China Normal University, explained that “a festival usually involves certain customs which are closely related to social trends. The recent boom in shopping festivals is proof of that.”

Xue noted that some sellers may have used the psychology behind consumer’s disposition when it comes to festivals and sales to construct shopping festivals with commercial features, which has created a commercial culture.

The professor also pointed out that shopping festivals with real value and significance will continue to develop with time, while pointless ones will simply die out. He suggested that “it’s important to take into consideration the cultural connotations when thinking about establishing shopping festivals, as they are more likely to be accepted and praised by consumers.”