How to Increase Sales with Singles’ Day Marketing

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In addition to Black Friday Cyber Monday, there are a number of Q4 shopping holidays to add to your ecommerce calendar and make the most of the holiday season. In this article, let’s focus on Alibaba’s Singles’ Day on November 11—a day that started as a cynical response to Valentine’s Day in China and turned into a record-breaking shopping event.

Just last year, Alibaba raked in more than $84 billion worth of sales on November 11 across its online platforms—that’s more than Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Prime Day combined. And Single Day’s popularity is growing more and more each year across the globe. 

graph of Alibaba’s gross merchandise volume on Singles’ Day from 2011 to 2021
Alibaba’s gross merchandise volume on Singles’ Day from 2011 to 2021 (in billion U.S. dollars). Source: Statista

Let’s look at how Singles’ Day came to be and how you can make the most out of it.

What is Singles’ Day?

Singles’ Day is a shopping holiday dedicated to celebrating singlehood. Created in 1993 by Nanjing University students, it was then called Bachelor’s Day. As its popularity grew among Chinese youth, ecommerce giant Alibaba adopted it as a singles’ shopping holiday in 2009. Alibaba renamed the holiday Singles’ Day because the date, 11/11, represents 4 singles.

Singles’ Day is on the rise in ecommerce

The explosive growth of Alibaba’s Singles’ Day shattered sales records worldwide—from $5.8 billion in 2013 to $84.54 billion in 2021—capturing the eye of the international ecommerce industry. The rise of Singles’ Day can also be partly attributed to China’s population of 1.4 billion. It is, after all, the world’s biggest market and most populous country.

An image showing Singles day hoodie design
Source: Etsy, Design by AlexisCaraCastro

Singles’ Day is becoming a worldwide shopping phenomenon, and there’s now a whole shopping festival revolving around it—the 11.11 Global Shopping Festival. Major retailers like H&M, Nike, and Gap have successfully merged Singles’ Day into their end-of-the-year sales. Even luxury brands like


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