Online marketplaces in China are busy preparing for the mid-year online shopping event as they must work harder to woo affluent and sophisticated consumers.
Initiated by leading e-commerce platform JD.com, "6/18" was first launched in 2010 to celebrate the company's anniversary on June 18. It joins the Singles' Day sale on Nov. 11 and has become one of China's largest online shopping sprees.
Other companies soon jumped on the bandwagon and began to offer special offers to get more customers.
Chinese tend to choose purchases based on quality and brands on 6/18,compared with price and delivery during Singles' Day, a survey from JD.com showed.
JD.com will use technology such as augmented reality and virtual reality to offer interactive shopping experiences and will also employ robots, driverless cars and drones for deliveries.
Xiaomi also started a promotion campaign offering discounts for most of its products, while Alibaba's Tmall decided to launch both online and offline activities to promote itself as a green, smart and ideal lifestyle platform.
Almost all Chinese e-commerce platforms are developing a "New Retail" model, which not only features online and offline (o2o) retail, but also one-stop and streamlined service from shopping to payment and delivery.
China is the world's largest online shopping market, with about 467 million online consumers spending about 26.1 trillion yuan (3.83 trillion U.S. dollars) last year, up 19.8 percent year on year.