Hong Tao, an economics professor at Beijing Technology and Business University, said Singles Day encourages shoppers to prioritize cheap prices over high quality, causing them to purchase items they don't need.
The Alibaba Group's various shopping platforms broke the 10 billion-yuan ($1.44 billion) sales threshold within the first two minutes and five seconds, after the e-commerce giant kicked off the 10th year of its iconic Double 11 shopping gala (also called 11.11 sale).
Almost $6.6 billion in sales were made on Cyber Monday in 2017, up about 17 percent from the previous year, according to Adobe Analytics. No, it's not what you would think at first, it is not a celebration of single life, kind-of an anti-Valentines Day but more a festival of online shopping.
But Singles' Day easily dwarfs worldwide equivalents like Black Friday and Cyber Monday. traditionally the largest online shopping days in the USA, when consumers flock to the internet for deals the day after Thanksgiving.
Over the last decade, Alibaba has nearly single-handedly turned Singles Day - November 11, or 11/11 - into a cultural phenomenon and by far the biggest day of the year for online shopping.More news: Khloe Kardashian, daughter True evacuate amid wildfires
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Here is a history of Singles' Day through the years.
The opening of 11.11 global shopping event was enlivened by performances featuring Mariah Carey, Cirque du Soleil and many more. "It's when retailers use the best products and best prices to show their gratitude to our consumers". "This burst of consumption, confined to just one day, can be exhausting for both buyers and sellers".
"With an increasing number of promotion events a year, consumers no longer feel that Double 11 is the only opportunity to get good bargains", said Pedro Yip, partner at consulting firm Oliver Wyman.
Also known as Double 11, the shopping extravaganza will draw to a close at midnight.
While sales growth remains steady, Alibaba's stock has dropped 16 percent this year amid economic uncertainties rising out of trade tensions between China and the United States. Pre-sales prior to the event were brisk, with 33 brands on Tmall reporting 100 million-yuan worth of pre-orders, the company said.