AliExpress, Alibaba’s e-commerce platform, launched in 2010 allowing vendors in China to sell small quantities to international customers at wholesale pricing. With eyes on expansion beyond its home market, Alibaba initiated a global hunt for 100,000 influencers and content creators to help brands and merchants sell products looking to replicate the success of TikTok and Instagram. The goal is to have 1 million content creators by 2023.
Alibaba hopes to replicate the success it’s had with KOLs driving sales on its China online marketplace Taobao. “For both Taobao and AliExpress, social content is a way to diversify offerings, but not to generate revenue,” Yuan Yuan, head of operations for AliExpress, told Bloomberg News. Influencers will help users stick with the platform instead of just making a one-time purchase. “The goal is to accumulate users, keep them there and encourage them to remain active.”
Yuan said AliExpress aims to help at least 100 of its army of a million influencers earn an annual income of more than US$1 million within three years. “Only if they can make money will they be motivated to create good content for our platform,” she said.
“AliExpress Connect” is a platform that was recently launched dedicated to influencer campaigns. Its initial focus is Europe, where Russia, France, Spain, and Poland comprise the majority of users.
“As e-commerce continues to grow and ‘shoppertainment’ reshapes the landscape and changes the way people shop online, influencers and content creators are playing a more important role in driving retail transformation and e-commerce success.” said Wang Mingqiang, General Manager of AliExpress.
Mingqiang said, “You see this in livestreaming sales, which have become a great source of job creation and income in China, especially during the Covid-19 crisis, when offline businesses were forced to close, and people had to stay at home.”
He continued, “AliExpress Connect is designed to create opportunity for both brands and influencers, as the world moves increasingly toward online shopping. It offers new income sources and job opportunities for influencers and content creators, helping them to scale and digitalize their business. While for brands, it opens up the opportunity to attract new customers.”
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