Singles Day 2017: How The Holiday Sales Went For European Retailers

Singles Day 2017: How The Holiday Sales Went For European Retailers

November 15, 2017

Alibaba has smashed the records by generating a total $25.3 billion in sales in Singles Day 2017 – a 40% jump from 2016.

Most probably, you’ve already heard that, right?

Maybe, you even probably know that this smashing $25.3 billion literally double the total of last year’s Cyber Monday and Black Friday sales in US.

In other words, in recent days, you’ve been probably bombarded enough by the news about Alibaba’s or maybe China’s shopping bonanza that just took over the headlines during the last few days.

Well, as we had the exact same dose of headlines and articles on Alibaba’s growing dominance in global e-commerce market in this special day in 2017, we wanted to look at things from a different angle and spot (from the other end of the Silk Road) and wanted to take a closer look at Europe, and the key players that participated in this bonanza day.

As hardcore pricing data geeks, we obviously spiced up this exclusive analysis with Prisync‘s data from the market and detected the major e-commerce sites and eventually came up with this report showing us what exactly happened in European E-Commerce Market on this holiday in 2017.

Let’s start with a simple question to better see the big picture that we’re actually looking at:

European Holiday Season Sales

Is it popular in Europe at all?

We all know that special days and special discounts are popular phenomena across the global e-commerce market, and all sizes of e-commerce companies try to participate in them by offering their best deals to their customers. – unless there are any cultural barriers involved.

For the ones who don’t know, November 11 is actually the Remembrance Day for the UK, Ireland, France and Belgium. On every November 11, these countries recall the end of hostilities of World War 1 on 11 November 1918.

Also, Polish Independence Day is November 11, and it’s a public holiday in Poland.

Due to this special cultural meaning of November 11, launching a campaign in these countries might feel a little difficult.

As a result of this fragmentation in the market, this holiday has not become a very popular special day embraced by all the retailers in Europe with massive special discounts and does not yield the record-breaking sales figures like the ones we read on news for Alibaba.

However, taking a closer look at the prices across Europe also shows us that there have been some major outliers from Germany, Holland, Sweden and Turkey that have dedicated resources on celebrating this day and joining the party, and it’s worth taking a look at what they had in hand to offer:

The Flag-bearers – GERMANY – 31% discount on average

Singles Day

MediaMarktSaturn Retail Group of Germany has actively participated both via and on 11 November 2017.

As a consumer electronics giant, the group has offered massive discounts on, averaging 31% according to Prisync’s data focusing on the product listings available on both sites that include products like MOTOROLA Moto Z2 Play (11.11.2017 Price: 299 Euros, 14.11.2017 Price: 449 Euros) or SAMSUNG Gear Fit 2 (11.11.2017 Price: 111 Euros, 14.11.2017 Price: 159.99 Euros).

Even though the website marketed the day as Singles Day 11.11, it did not forget to state that these massive discounts were not only for the them. – as the banner above reads: “..nicht nur fur Singles.” 🙂 – HOLLAND – 17% discount on average is the biggest ecommerce site in Holland.

By placing a dedicated banner on its deals, was also one of the biggest participants of the party from Europe, according to Prisync‘s pricing data.

As a huge generalist retailer, has offered its special deals in a wider product range than

For example a Maybelline Makeup product was priced as low as only 6,5 Euros, where the original price tag was actually 16,49 Euros. already had great offerings from the consumer electronics category such as this HP Desktop computer, with a special price tag of only 413 Euros – originally priced at 549 Euros.

On average, had 17% discount on its wide range of special deals and had become another shark in the European tank. – HOLLAND – 15% discount on average

BCC is one of the biggest consumer electronics retailers in the Netherlands and is part of the FNAC Darty Group.

They also actively participated in this shopping holiday by listing special deals for a group of products ranging from washing machines to smartphones.

The total average of the discounts offered on those products live at were calculated as 15% by Prisync. – comparing the price-points of 11.11.2017 vs. 14.11.2017.

Toothbrush Discount
Phillips Discount

This electric toothbrush of Philips with a discount price tag 139 Euros on 11.11.2017. – a 29% discount from the original price tag of 194,99 Euros. Another Philips product, this time a trimmer was spotted at 79 Euros, discounted 26% from its original price of 105,89 Euros.

Looking at the discounted product range of, we can conclude that brands (here, Philips for example) might also give an hand to retailers and collaborate with them on offering special discounts on days like this.

Also, the analysis on the same product range, signals us a common strategy, where retailers mostly apply their full force on discounts for few products, (more than 25% for the 2 above-mentioned Philips products for example), but their overall discount for the whole special assortment hovers below that dramatic range – here at around 15% for

With all those data-points in mind, we can conclude that was another active flag-bearer is hailing from Holland alongside – SWEDEN – 17% discount on average

In terms of prices and cost of living, Nordics are known for riding way above the average. – around 40% more than the European average.

Also, in the Nordics e-commerce landscape, companies also aspire to attract their audiences by values like sustainability, quality and design, not only by competitive prices. – it certainly helps though as you can read on Prisync’s case study with from Denmark.

Coming from that part of the European E-Commerce Market (Sweden), was another major e-commerce site, where Prisync’s online price checks detected solid special deals offered online.

Singles Day Sweden had a dedicated page for informing its shoppers about the bonanza and also had a special category for listing down the products came with special discounts on 11.11.2017.

According to Prisync’s analysis, the average of the discounts available on those products were 17%. Prisync’s data spotted some extraordinary discounts like a 78% discount applied on this game for XBOX One for example. (The 11.11.2017 price was only 150 SEK (15 Euros), almost nothing when compared to the 14.11.2017 price of 549 SEK (55 Euros).) There were also a few other digital games listings with discounts hovering around the same levels of +60%. It’s actually a smart strategy to apply online discounts for digital goods like Playstation or XBOX games on special days like this, thanks to their different unit cost structure for the retailers than physical goods. – they also attract quite a lot of attention thanks to their massive popularity.

Like in the case with, have also prioritized some of their product listings when it came to promoting their campaign and picked the products with discount levels well above the average at the front-line. (+60% vs. the total average of 17%.)

Regardless of this finding – again, that could be seen on all the retailers across the globe when it comes to offering special deals – we can conclude that did really a good job embracing this day in Europe with deals offered on wide range of products, and was one of the key players from the Nordics this year, to join the party. – TURKEY – 13% discount on average

Singles Day Turkey is a joint venture of Dogus Group (Turkey) and SK Planet (Republic of Korea), and one of the major e-commerce marketplaces active in Turkish E-Commerce market.

SK Planet also runs similar online marketplace businesses in Malaysia (, Korea ( and Thailand ( and is their business addressing the growing Turkish e-commerce market, which is generally included in European E-Commerce Market coverages.

Out of all the major e-commerce sites that we’ve covered in this analysis, was the one which took this day most seriously, almost at the same degree with Alibaba, in their market, Turkey and named the day as “Ugurlu Gun” (means lucky day in Turkish), rather than Singles Day.

The wide range of offerings came from categories like smartphones, TVs, cameras, apparels, hand tools, pet food and others. In other words, unlike the above-mentioned consumer electronics retailers, but like, has also approached it as a generalist retailer.

Some products like this Under Armour sneaker have seen sharp discounts beyond the 60% range (from about 100 Euros to only 36 Euros). – and eventually went out of stock. 🙂 Another outlier product with a way larger discount ratio compared to the average of 13% was this Claude Bernard branded watch, with a discount of 50%. (from 250 Euros to 125 Euros.)

When we look at the data with a more holistic approach, we can also spot the same characteristics that we have observed in the discounting strategy of or About 10% of the products had seen 30%+ discounts, but the rest (the majority, i.e 90% of the other discounted products) had an average discount ratio of only 10%.

However, powered up with a massive marketing campaign behind, attractive discounts applied on the popular products across many categories in the market, and its origins close to the land of Alibaba, has drawn a clear image as one of the significant flag-bearers.

More to tell

As you’ve read above, our data tells us that the special deals for all the products listed on the Singles Day participant sites, are not all equal. They tend to include some striking discounts for a relatively small group of products, and not-so-striking discounts for the rest.

Yet, our data don’t stop there, and it has even more to tell.

Our data also shows us that days like Singles Day 2017 is also regarded as a massive not-to-be missed opportunity with record website traffics measured on participating web shops. With this in mind, alongside some solid discounts applied for the special assortment on offer, retailers have also lifted up the price-points for some of their products during Singles Day 2017, or simply did not change the prices after Singles Day 2017 and used it as a spotlight effect for those products. Within the whole assortment of products that have been promoted as part of a Singles Day 2017 campaign, Prisync spotted that, 6-7% of the price points have either not changed as of 14.11.2017 or even decreased further.

So, it’s not a super popular party in Europe

With the smashing record of $25 billion in perspective and all the buzz that Alibaba has run during the day, we can conclude that Singles Day 2017 was not a super popular party in European E-Commerce Market, yet, some agile online retailers from different parts of the continent still leveraged the opportunity and took part in Singles Day 2017 as the flag-bearers of Europe.

Even though the Singles Day outsizes the Black Friday and Cyber Monday in terms of sales in global scale, in Europe, due to the cultural barriers that we explained, it still does not attract the same attention as the Black Friday and Cyber Monday does.

Yet, this is still only a hypothesis, right?

Make sure that we as the Prisync team will be covering up the fresh market data like we did for Singles Day 2017, during Black Friday and Cyber Monday 2017 too and expect to detect much bigger vibrations from the market.

So, you better stay tuned for more in the upcoming days and weeks!

1 Comment
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    March 25, 2019

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