A shopping phenomenon celebrating single people is taking the world by storm – and South Africa’s favourite online marketplace is at the front of the queue
Cape Town, 10 November 2021 – Every Valentine’s Day, the world’s single people quip there should also be a day just for them to be spoilt and pampered.
It’s a playful jibe, much like South African men suggest “every day is Women’s Day” when it rolls around each August.
What many people don’t realise is there already is a Singles Day – and it’s bigger than anyone could have imagined.
It dates back to 2009, when Alibaba launched the first-ever Singles Day to encourage single people in China to celebrate their freedom by buying gifts for themselves.
Cleverly, the Chinese online retail market promoted Singles Day on November 11, or put another way, 11/11.
While the rest of the world may not know it yet, Singles Day could well challenge Black Friday and Christmas as the best-known shopping event of the year.
In fact, as Olivia Cox of referral marketing platform Mention Me points out, in 2020 Alibaba achieved $74.1-billion (R1,13-trillion) in sales when it extended Singles Day to 11 days.
“That’s more than 2.5 times Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales combined,” Cox says.
It is estimated that Singles Day is growing by 40% annually, thanks in large part to how it is trending among younger generations who are mainly single and have money to spend.
Teresa Delaport, of South African research house BMI Research, believes Singles Day has every chance of becoming the next big consumer experience in the country.
Black Friday started out as a shopping day in the United States and is now a global phenomenon, so there is no reason an event conceptualised in China can’t do the same in South Africa, she says.
South African internet auction and online marketplace bidorbuy is inclined to agree – so much so in fact, that on 11 November this year it will be celebrating Singles Day with a one-day promotion where shoppers can get up to 70% off on certain deals.
“It’s an opportunity for people to spoil themselves,” said bidorbuy CEO Craig Lubbe.
“Singles Day is all about making yourself feel good. Everyone is different so different products would appeal to a range of single people. Having said that some products allow for expression of self, for example, cellphones, clothing, especially sneakers, watches, items for your home and health and beauty.”
While Lubbe expects computers, electronics, home- and living ware and jewellery and watches to sell well on bidorbuy’s Singles Day, there will also be unique items that will appeal to single shoppers.
“These include Antiques and Collectables, Coins & Notes, and Militaria. These categories attract customers from all over the world due to the nature of items being sold. Railway Models within Toys & Hobbies also appeals to a very niche market,” Lubbe says.
Bidorbuy has been especially innovative in 2021.
The introduction of its Singles Day offering comes after it extended Black Friday to the entire month of November to ease pressure on consumers who sometimes feel they have to make snap judgments on their purchases.
In this way, their shopping experience becomes more enjoyable as they are offered more deals over an extended period.
Established in South Africa in 1999, bidorbuy has grown to become the nation’s largest online shopping and auction marketplace. It offers a safe and convenient way for people to buy and sell virtually anything online at a fixed price or in an auction format.
Submitted by: Transform Marketing