While this research, including proprietary consumer research across Tier 1 to 3 cities, paints a dark future for some business models, we must remember that China as a whole is still a great opportunity. Even with a slower pace of spending growth in the “new normal”, China is still growing far quicker than most other world markets. Accessing all of this growth however is the challenge; businesses must adapt to the changing environment and be willing to invest to perform well online.
For much of the past decade, China has offered retailers and consumer goods companies opportunities for unbridled growth and long-term potential. The last two years (and especially the past six months) however, have changed all this as many businesses have seen low-single-digit growth and negative like-for-likes.