Back in 2009, Uniqlo launched their own Chinese online store, Uniqlo.cn. The very same day, they also opened a store on Tmall.com which not soon after the likes of eSprit and Gap followed.
However, it was announced a couple of weeks ago that Uniqlo will become the first international clothing brand to take advantage of JD.com warehouses and same day delivery network. For those of you who are unfamiliar with JD.com, or Jing Dong Mall (京东商城), formerly known as 360buy, is a Chinese eCommerce company, one of the many rivals of Alibaba.
“UNIQLO’s success is built on attention to every detail,” said Richard Liu, Founder and CEO of JD.com. “From design to manufacture to distribution, their processes ensure that they can continue offering high-quality apparel choices that are consistently fashionable, innovative and desirable. These qualities make UNIQLO an ideal partner for JD.com. With their new flagship store on our site they will be able to satisfy the demands of Chinese shoppers who are seeking a fast, reliable and secure way to shop for authentic UNIQLO items from the comfort of their homes and with the fingertip convenience of their smartphones.”
For the ever fast moving and impatient consumer, this means that online orders will be even quicker from clicking the purchase button to having it in your hands. This follows the opening of JD Worldwide (JD.hk) which launched Wednesday 15th April which is dedicated to selling international goods from Japan, Korea, UK, including eBay who have also launched a store. The question on the tip of our tongues is why has Uniqlo chosen to partner with JD but still have an online presence and store on Tmall?
Tmall is currently trialling out this method of delivery with Danish men’s apparel, Jack and Jones, it is currently only available to those in Beijing but this system is slightly different in that stock is taken from a physical brick and mortar stores nearby to the consumer and sent by same day courier services. Tmall started this trial last week but if successful, it is set to expand to Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Chengdu and Hangzhou by the end of the month. Both great ideas to get orders to customers but time will only tell and prove which method is more effective – this really is the battle of Cat Vs Dog.