Enabled by Alibaba

Main Content

Enabled by Alibaba

libaba is a household name in China. More than 670 million Chinese consumers shop on Alibaba’s retail platform, which is an ecosystem that supports tens of millions of small businesses and service providers, creates millions of jobs and drives the consumption economy in China. But we are often asked what we do outside of China, particularly in the United States.Our strategy is simple: We are enabling American businesses to access the massive Chinese market and, increasingly, other parts of the world.

In the past year alone, nearly 4,000 American brands sold to Chinese consumers through our platforms – including well-known national brands, such as Apple, Mars, Nike, Starbucks, Costco, Ford and P&G in addition to local farmers and small businesses. U.S. companies using Alibaba’s Tmall marketplaces alone sold more than $31 billion worth of goods to Chinese consumers last year, up more than 60% from 2017.

Four factors drive that success:

  1. Chinese consumers are hungry for high-quality products, and American brands are viewed favorably by the rising middle class in China.
  2. The number of Chinese consumers reached by Alibaba – including the middle class and those from less developed regions – is more than twice the size of the population of the United States.
  3. Alibaba eliminates the traditional barriers that have made it challenging to do business abroad. We take care of supply chains, logistics, payments and marketing and let U.S. companies focus on product innovation and serving their new customers.
  4. Our brand protection practices are best in class. Brands work with us because they trust us as a partner to protect their IP.



Here are some of the ways Alibaba is helping American businesses:

We enable U.S. brands, small businesses, retailers and farmers to sell to Chinese consumers

Think of Alibaba’s China retail platform as an operator of a digital mall with virtual stores. Alibaba takes care of the marketing, payments and logistics services for these digital stores, thus allowing brands to focus on the shopping experience and own the relationship with their customers. Most importantly, we are not in the retail business ourselves. We partner with, instead of compete against, the merchants doing business on our platforms. Alibaba’s success is aligned with the success of the brands and retailers on our platforms.

The sellers on our platforms make up more than 75% of the most valuable consumer brands in the world and include iconic American companies, such as Hershey,Starbucks,Michael Kors, andTory Burch. Small businesses have also found tremendous success with Alibaba, including California-based natural soap makerDr. Bronner’s, family-ownedEmily’s Chocolatesin Washington and Graceland Fruit in Michigan – all of which have expanded their global reach by partnering with Alibaba.

We help American businesses attract Chinese tourists

Each year, Chinese tourists make over 120 million trips to travel destinations abroad. The most popular form of payment for Chinese citizens in their home country is not credit cards but mobile payment apps such as Alipay, operated by Alibaba’s affiliate Ant Financial. When they travel abroad, Chinese tourists want a form of payment that’s already familiar to them at home.

According to Nielsen, retailers who offer a familiar form of payment to Chinese tourists can see up to a 60% increase in sales. We are working with U.S. cities, hotel chains, department stores such asNeiman Marcusand other merchants to help them attract new business from the more than 3 million Chinese tourists visiting the U.S. annually:

  • Walgreenshas rolled out Alipay at more than 7,000 stores across the U.S.
  • Monumental Sports & Entertainmentis working with us to attract more visitors from China by enabling tourists to use Alipay at points of sale for tickets, food and beverage, and team merchandise in the Capital One Arena in Washington, DC.
  • The San Diego Tourism authorityis partnering with us to encourage more Chinese tourism to the city through Alibaba’s travel platform Fliggy and to drive spending at local merchants through Alipay acceptance.

Alipay is now a payment option in hundreds of thousands of locations across the U.S.

We support American wholesale merchants

The global wholesale e-commerce market is $23.9 trillion – six times larger than the global retail e-commerce market. Alibaba runs one of the largest global wholesale e-commerce platforms and helps American small businesses in two ways: sourcing the highest-quality and best-priced goods online, and selling to global wholesale buyers. Through our wholesale global platform, American manufacturers can meet all of their supply chain needs. For example, the founder of The Abingdon Watch Company, a small business catering to the female aviator market based in Las Vegas,started and grew her business with Alibaba. Earlier this year, we launched aspecial program tailored to U.S. merchantsto help American businesses access customers around the world, enabled by Alibaba technology.Alibabaalso partnered with U.S. big box retailerOffice Depot. Through Alibaba, the company has expanded its product assortment for business customers and honed its value proposition to accelerate more B2B sales.

We bringHollywood to China’s screens

Our movie division Alibaba Pictures, based in Los Angeles, is bringing Hollywood films to China’s movie lovers through co-productions, co-financing, and marketing partnerships. Because of Alibaba’s unique consumer insights in China, we are helping Hollywood studios target the right Chinese audience, whether they are blockbuster films or niche offerings. Films such as “Green Book,” “Mission: Impossible” and “A Dog’s Purpose” saw massive success in China, thanks to our ability to identify and market directly to each film’s target audience. We also have a comprehensive strategic alliance withSteven Spielberg’s Amblin Partnersto co-produce and co-finance films for global and Chinese audiences.

Alibaba Cloud offers go-to-China solutions

Our cloud computing unit, Alibaba Cloud, is the platform of choice for U.S. multinationals as well as software service providers to expand into the China market. For example, Salesforce recently announced astrategic partnershipwith us to be the exclusive provider of Salesforce products to customers in the greater China area. Phoenix-based global technology providerAvnetis partnering with Alibaba Cloud to bring their IoT product to Chinese business customers

Alibaba Group is the best partner for American businesses to tap into the massive and rising consumer demand in China and other emerging economies.

Learn moreabout our work to advance sales for American brands, farmers, small businesses and tourist destinations.

Ant Group
Reuse this content

Sign Up For Our Newsletter

Stay updated on the digital economy with our free weekly newsletter