The favourite brands of women in the China luxury goods market

For a long time, China bucked the global trends of having a luxury market powered by female shoppers. Back in 1995 only one in ten high end purchases in China was made by a woman. Men had more money, and before the Chinese government introduced new laws to clamp down on bribery, used to give lots of luxury presents to their business partners. Now Chinese women are catching up, and account for roughly half of consumers in the China luxury goods market (source: Bloomberg).

What do Chinese women buy?

In China, giving an expensive gift is a sign of your own personal success, so Chinese women give only the best. Louis Vuitton used to reign supreme in the luxury fashion market, although it has now been knocked down two places. Rival firm Chanel had taken the number one spot in 2013, according to the volume of internet searches performed for luxury goods China. As of the beginning of 2015, however, the top spot goes to Apple.

 Apple in China

In 2012 Apple held just 7.5% of the Chinese smartphone market (source: CNN). Now, with the iPhone 6 Plus catering to the Asian demand for larger phones and the incorporation of Chinese language ads into its luxury brand marketing, Apple is now the preferred brand for gifting among 18.9% of female luxury consumers (source: Haute Living).

Chanel in China

Chanel was the number one luxury brand in the Chinese luxury fashion market 2013-14. While it has now been surpassed by Apple, it is still the most popular fashion brand for women. With the popularity of Louis Vuitton still falling, and Dior holding the fourth spot with just over a third of Chanel’s popularity, the brand comfortably holds the lead in the Chinese luxury goods market, for now.

 Louis Vuitton in China

There was a time where Louis Vuitton was the must-have fashion for Chinese women in the China luxury goods market. It was so popular that one French outlet has to introduce a rule that only one handbag could be bought per passport, otherwise Chinese tourists would clear out their entire inventory (source: English.People.CN). Now only 10% of Chinese women prefer LV when gifting, placing it firmly in the number 3 spot.

Fashion addicts addicted to luxury goods China

While sale of watches and expensive menswear fell last year, demand for cosmetics, perfume, and women’s wear grew by 10 per cent. Middle income women, from wealthy urban cities such as Beijing, Guangzhou, and Shanghai, are driving the demand in the China luxury goods market. These women are knowledgeable about fashion brands and want to impress their friends and peers (source: Bloomberg).

 Selling luxury goods China

There is a gradual shift happening in the China luxury market. Women have more purchasing power and the gender split in shoppers is starting to move towards global averages. Products targeted at women are gaining popularity, and the general rule still applies that if you want to succeed in the Chinese market, you must customise your offering to meet the demands of domestic shoppers.

(Image source: Image created by sattva |