In the world of web design and ecommerce , the Magento platform is not unknown. We do not really need to talk about it. We could say it is one of the biggest and most powerful ecommerce platforms on the market. If you need to develop a complex, totally customized and specific CMS (Customer Management System) for an ecommerce platform your solution will definitely be Magento.
Though this is not the main issue, this article is about Magento in China. As we know, China has the largest ecommerce market in the world. There are more and more people buying through ecommerce platforms and it is one of the characteristics of this country. But do you think that the Magento solution is the best for the Chinese market? Let’s dig in and find the answer.
Does Magento Fit With The Specificities Of The Chinese Market?
First, we could say yes, that it is a global solution and it is used all over the world, but that is not totally correct. Magento did bring to China a global solution but the problem is that every country is different and that is why we need to adapt some parts to the local market : this is what we call glocalisation (global and local).
What we hear from the local population is that Magento is failing to deliver China-specific features to meet the local needs.
What Are The Features That Magento Could Change To Improve Its Use In The Chinese Market?
To sign up, usually, we have to use our email address. That is how it works in the western countries that use the Magento platform. If you have never been in China, you might think that it would be the same here as well… but it is not! In China, we do not use email addresses very much. Therefore, It would be better to use a phone number to sign up and then receive a confirmation code via SMS.
WeChat is the largest social platform in China. Every year they have more and more users and they are constantly evolving due to the continuous development of new features. Therefore if Magento could incorporate WeChat into their system they would bring the Chinese shopper much closer.
- WeChat login: the users could use their WeChat IDs to register for a Magento account. It would be useful for companies because they would be able to receive some client information automatically such as: name, gender, country, region, city etc.
- WeChat messages: this could be a new way to send out promotions or even send some order messages directly through WeChat.
- Account binding: it could be useful if the users could connect with their phone number and then if they want to use their WeChat account they could link it. In the end, it would be simpler because there would only be one account for the user.
As we all know, usually when you want to make an online purchase you can pay with credit cards, debit cards or even PayPal. That is what is used in the western world and you might think that it is the same in China. If you ever live in China, you will soon find out that it is not the case.
The trend in China is to pay with Alipay and WeChat pay. That is why it would be very beneficial to add these payment methods to Magento so that it could better fit the Chinese market. One step farther, if merchants could add other payment methods such as: Union Pay, MiPay or even Baidu Wallet this would make Magento a lot more user-friendly.
As you may have already noticed, the difference with China is not only about the language but also about the culture and the local trends.
There are some other points that you could be adapted such as:
- Not needing to have a billing address because credit and debit cards are not often used.
- The use of a field called "full name" instead of "first name" and "last name" because the format of names is different for Chinese people.
- The address format should be: Province – City – District – detailed address.
- For a cross-border ecommerce website in China, the use of an ID is required for cross-border products.
- It is mportant to have some product reviews with pictures.
- The ability to track and view information about your shipping status when you log in to your account.
- Have a back-end in Chinese characters for the export orders/invoices…
What The Next Step For You?
As you can see, there are many features of Magento platform that need to be adapted for use in the Chinese market. Again, China has the largest ecommerce market in the world and it continues to grow. Therefore, it would be a shame to let the global Magento solution be the reason you miss out on important opportunities in this market. That is why you should consider taking these recommendations to heart. If you need more information about this subject or even some help implementing any of these suggestions we would be happy to help. So please do not hesitate to contact us.