(Yicai Global) March 5 -- The opportunities presented by New Retail, Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.'s strategy to blur the line between online and real world shopping, were in the spotlight at an annual Beauty Awards ceremony hosted by Tmall, the company's business-to-consumer e-commerce platform.
Tmall used the Shanghai event to showcase some of its New Retail gems such as a 'magic mirror' that lets online shoppers virtually try on clothes before purchasing and a lipstick vending machine. Tmall, which sells products from thousands of top international cosmetic brands, named the winners in categories such as search popularity, customer reviews and sales to millions of customers.
The Tmall Beauty Awards sought to demonstrate that new and emerging technologies can help brands better engage with customers and break down barriers between online and offline shopping. Alibaba Chairman Jack Ma devised the New Retail strategy in 2016, describing it as "the integration of online, offline, logistics and data across a single value chain."
Consumers change habits and behavior quickly, but they still want the same things, Ye Guohui, general manager of Alibaba's New Retail department, told Yicai Global in a post-event news briefing. Convenience and security are high on that list, and Guo believes that New Retail will be a long-term solution to meet consumer needs.
It also highlighted the effects of 'girl power,' presenting female consumer trends that have taken the cosmetics market by storm over the past few years. China is a key market for both domestic and global brands and demand for quality cosmetics remains high. Women shoppers in the country are becoming more and more aware of their appearance and are willing to make multiple and repeat purchases to keep on top of their looks, data from Tmall and consumer researcher Kantar Worldpanel shows.