5 ways the U.S. must catch up to China in digital payments
China dwarfs the U.S. market in e-commerce adoption and is likely to be soon giving lessons to internet executive from U.S. and Western countries.
According to the U.S. Department of Commerce, e-commerce represented 9.8 percent of total retail sales in the third quarter of 2018. China’s e-commerce represented 16 percent of total retail in 2016, according to the Goldman Sachs’ China E-Commerce Shopping Re-Imagined Report – a rate the U.S. is unlikely to beat anytime soon given China’s digital commerce growth.
In its 10th year promoting an unofficial Chinese holiday celebrating singlehood, Alibaba’s online sales hit a record 213.5 billion Yuan (about US$30.8 billion). In comparison, Americans spent US$ 11.62 billion across ALL online merchants on 2017’s Black Friday (US$ 5.03 billion) and Cyber Monday (US$ 6.59 billion) combined, according to Adobe.
On the mobile payment front, China's Alipay exceeded 1 billion users with more than 700 million users in China alone, according to a report from the China Daily in January 2019. Additionally, more than 40 million small shops and sellers accept Alipay in China. The WeChat messaging app has more than 1 billion active users and Forbes reported that iResearch Group estimates 80 percent of WeChat users have used the WeChat Pay payment service. In contrast, U.S.-based PayPal reported just having 267 million active accounts across the globe at the end of the fourth quarter of 2018.