Five Important Facts About Online Beauty Purchasing Behaviour in China 2015

OKOMP Marketing 19 May, 2015

Five Important Facts About Online Beauty Purchasing Behaviour in China 2015

The Chinese cosmetics market is continuously growing at a rapid rate. Since 2007, the online cosmetics market has been booming. After eight years of extremely high growth, it is now increasing at a steadier pace of around 28% annually. Chinese consumers have now become more open to online cosmetics shopping and using online resources to compare products.

Below are five key facts about Chinese consumer behaviour in 2015, from a Chinese e-commerce platform.


Chinese cosmetics consumers are placing much greater reliance on e-commerce websites

According to a recent white paper entitled “Chinese Female Cosmetics Online Purchasing White Paper,” released by JingDong, one of the largest e-commerce platform in China, Chinese e-commerce websites are widely used throughout China, in Tier 1, 2, and 3 cities. It was concluded that:

  • around 20% of women surveyed chose e-commerce websites to buy their cosmetic products
  • 79% of the interviewees said they will chose online
  • 40% of their cosmetic spending is online

The reasons given were that online purchasing offers more choices, makes it easier to compare products, and is more a convenient process for making a purchase.


Geographic differences also apply to cosmetic product purchasing

  • Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou are the top three markets for JD beauty
  • Beijing contributes the largest sales in general
  • Shanghai contributes the second largest sales for JD beauty, holding the top slot for men’s cosmetics and care products and for women’s personal care.
  • Guangdong is the third largest market, leading in oral care and colour cosmetics


In China, the Internet is the main channel for acquiring cosmetic product information

The behaviour of Chinese consumers is becoming much more sophisticated, seeking information from multiple channels. The Internet and social media have become the main information sources, whilst TV, magazines and newspapers still have relatively good coverage.

Chinese consumer analysis, chinese cosmetic market


Basic care is mainstream for the online cosmetics market.

The colour cosmetics market is growing a rapid rate, and the make-up market is far from saturated.

The fastest growing beauty products online are sold by JD Beauty.


Chinese consumer analysis, chinese cosmetic market


Consumer choice is based largely on trust and confidence

Tmall, JD and other big e-commerce platforms are the most popular websites for consumers to buy cosmetics. In general, the big platforms are deemed to be more trustworthy and have brand authorisation, thereby reducing the risk of buying counterfeit products.

Chinese consumer analysis, chinese cosmetic market



Foreign companies who wish to enter into the Chinese market must:

  • Understand the unique needs of consumers from different regions. The Chinese market is very dynamic and diverse, and different regions need to be treated differently and uniquely
  • Approach customers from different channels, as only advertising is not enough
  • Online reputation: social media marketing to build up a trustworthy brand is key to success
  • Strategic partnerships with major e-commerce platforms can bring unexpected growth to the brand