The Flourishing Market of Air Purifiers in China

Although there has been significant improvement in China’s air quality situation in the last few years, the country has been facing pollution and smog problems for decades. China is investing heavily in renewable energy but still has a long way to go before solving these issues. In the meantime, Chinese consumers are turning to air purifiers for their homes, schools, and offices as they are getting more aware of air quality and its health consequences.

In this post, we are going to look at the market data, identify the opportunities and challenges that air purifier companies will encounter in China as well as the best ways to promote & sell your goods there. (Head to the very end of this post to read about the IQAir case study.)

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The huge market potential for air purifiers in China

The Chinese air purifier market is still very young and untapped, presenting huge opportunities for domestic and foreign brands, as young consumers are becoming more and more aware of the bad impact of pollution on their health.

2021-2021 Forecast for China Residential Air Purifier Market (Source: Technavio)

China’s air purifiers market was worth around $2 billion in 2017 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of about 14% to surpass $4.3 billion by 2023.

According to Statista research, by 2017, the sales volume of air purifiers was estimated to reach 9.82 million units in China, growing from 1.12 million units in 2011. In China, growing air pollution, rising urbanization along rising affluence lead to continuous upgoing sales volume in air purifiers.

It is estimated that the residential air purifier segment will reach USD 219.10 million in revenue by 2025 with an average growth of 5.40% in the 2021-2025 period.

Chinese people are becoming more conscious of the importance of air quality

People’s views on air quality and environmental pollution are changing and the awareness of health issues related to carbon and dangerous gases emissions is growing. Another important argument for air purifier growth in China is the government’s focus on solving air quality problems, which ultimately increases the awareness of the issue among citizens.

This is also attributed to an increasing number of Chinese who can afford air purifiers and filters. The fact that more people can now afford these devices is one of the main arguments for the air purifier market growth in China. Indeed, there are many other countries with similar or worse air pollution issues (such as India), the difference between them and china is mainly monetary.

We should also note, that the Chinese air purifier market is still in its infancy with only 10% of the population having an air purifier. In China, air purifier becomes the fifth most sought-after home appliance after air-conditioners, refrigerators, washing machines, and TVs.

What are Chinese consumers’ criteria when buying an air purifier?

Functionality and cost are the keys to efficiently selling air purifiers in China.

  • Multi-functional is the first key. Indeed, multi-functional air purifiers which combine the functions of an air-conditioner, controlled mechanical ventilation, air circulation, and purification system are selling better.
  • The second key is the cost. For Chinese customers, the more expensive an air purifier is, the better it would be. Moreover, the market of air purifiers is led by foreign brands with Boneco from Switzerland, Philips from Holland, Panasonic, and Sharp from Japan. Chinese consumers have more trust in a foreign brand because they consider it as a quality guarantee.
  • Smart Appliances – about 80% of China’s families have used at least 1 smart appliance in their daily life in 2020.
3 best-seller air purifiers brands in China

How to sell your air purifier in China?

Find a Chinese distributor for your air purifier brand

Finding and then working with Chinese distributors can be tricky as there are many challenges in your way such as:

  • Emails prospection does not work in China
  • The language barrier – can you speak Chinese proficiently?
  • Hard to get the attention of Chinese distributors as they are highly solicited
  • Guanxi/Network or therefore lack of a network in China
  • Business habits and so on

To understand how to work with Chinese distributors we invite you to read this post. Check out our services and solutions to assist companies with building a strong distribution network in China.

E-commerce platforms reach more viewers

One of the fastest and most efficient strategies to sell your air purifier products is to use e-commerce platforms to sell online. Nowadays, China has the world’s most important cyber-commerce with a market experiencing a 25% growth every year. The development of new technologies and the increased use of smartphones and tablets allowed an explosive growth of e-commerce in China.

Sell on China’s #1 Online Marketplace: Tmall

One of the best Chinese e-commerce platforms is Tmall which is part of the Alibaba group founded by Jack Ma. This is definitely the largest B2C platform in China, it offers a wide selection of affordable products and decent logistics, attracting value-conscious shoppers.

Air purifiers on Tmall

Tmall also offers a cross-border eCommerce option for companies that do not have a physical presence in the Chinese market yet. If you are looking to try out the Chinese market without taking the big decision to settle your company in the country cross-border is a great option for you.

Find out more about our Tmall Services

JD: famous for selling electronics & home appliances

Known as the “Amazon of China”, JD.com is also one of the main B2C Chinese e-commerce platforms and is one of Tmall’s biggest rivals.

JD was initially known for selling electronics and home appliances. Although JD.com has largely increased its selection of products, it’s still one of the main Chinese online channels for buying these types of goods.

Just like Tmall, JD.com has a cross-border eCommerce option, read more about the registration process and fees here.

Suning, China Home Appliances Leader

Suning Global is a leading e-commerce platform that connects Chinese shoppers with international brands and products. The company has over 300 shopfronts on the site, which are powered by Suning’s own logistics service in addition to financial support services offered through Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., an affiliate of theirs.

Suning also proposes a cross-border function for companies not registered in China. Read more about the process of selling on Suning’s cross-border e-commerce platform here.

Discover more Chinese Online Marketplaces

To Sell More in China, Work on your Brand Awareness

To enter Chinese e-commerce platforms there are two vital solutions. Firstly, your company needs to have very strong branding on the e-commerce platforms and secondly, you need to have clever digital marketing in place with a budget.

Improve your air purifier brands’ credibility with a Chinese website

A Chinese website is very important to develop strong visibility in China because this is the key to developing your activities in the country. Therefore, having a Chinese website hosted in China is essential for your business. 

Philips website in China

Chinese consumers spend more than 40% of their daily life on the Internet and these internet users trust more Chinese websites than English websites. It is also important to adapt your website to Chinese visuals and design standards. Rember to optimize your web design for mobile devices, as most Chinese Internet users check the web on their phones.

Good Baidu SEO boosts your brand awareness

SEO on Baidu is the key to the visibility of your brand in China. Baidu is the most used search engine in China, ranks 4th among the most visited sites in the world, and currently has more than 800 million web pages.

Baidu SEO results for air purifiers

Baidu now offers a wide range of services, such as web searches, image searches, music, forums, and a Q&A service. SEO on Baidu requires several steps, which may be different from what needs to be done on Google. The notions of trust and notoriety remain essential for companies wishing to enter the Chinese market and be visible on Baidu.

Promote your air purifier in China with social media & KOL marketing

China is the world’s largest connected country: more than 90% of Chinese people have an account on at least one Chinese social network.

  • Wechat is the social media most used in China and, regardless of the size and profile of your company, it is an essential medium to develop your marketing strategy in the country. Wechat buyers can access the Wechat store and also have “one-click-payment” by using WeChat Payment. Having a strong presence and visibility on these media platforms will increase your brand’s chances of becoming viral and being shared among consumers.
  • Weibo is the second largest open social platform. It is very suitable for mass marketing. Advertising on the platform can help your brand to reach numerous Chinese customers. 
KOL marketing about air purifiers on Chinese social media

The platform gathers a lot of KOLs (Key Opinion Leaders who are Chinese influencers) to a point that you can find almost every celebrity and influencer that you can name.

  • KOL marketing & live streaming is a trendy way to market your brand and it is now the most popular one in China. You can target influencers from your niche and they will help you reach a bigger audience on Wechat, Weibo, Little Red Book, or Douyin. a good influencer marketing strategy in China is one of the most effective ways to build good e-reputation and branding for a company.

GMA IQAir air purifier case study

IQAir specializes in the research & development and production of air purifiers in Switzerland for more than 50 years and has accumulated a lot of technical and marketing experience. It is very famous among air purifier manufacturers.

Their air purifiers come with an app that helps users control their devices directly from their phones but also to measure the air quality in the room giving them insights on what setting they should be using. The app also gives them information on the status of their air purifier filter.

Most air purifier brand has adopted these practices, what separate IQair from their competitor is its air quality indicators app that allows users to follow AQI anywhere in the world based on data from the different meteorological and governmental organization. The app comes in handy as it also gives a good explanation of the different types of pollution particles in the air, their generosities, and what preventive measures users should take to avoid dangers.

IQAir air quality indicator & advertorial

This IQAir app comes as a smart complement to their already complete marketing strategies (online marketing management, online omnichannel marketing work involving websites, apps, social media, e-commerce, search engines, etc), positioning the companies as a reference in the field this increasing the trust consumers have in their products. Trust is critical in the Chinese air purifier market where consumers are suspicious and quality-sensitive.

Contact us to sell your air purifiers in the Chinese market!

We are a digital marketing agency based in Shanghai and specialize in the development and elaboration of the marketing and digital strategies of companies. Our international team of more than 70 experts makes us an ideal agency to develop your interests in China. We worked with over 600 brands from different industries, helping them gain success in the market in China.

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And many more. Contact us or leave a comment, we will be glad to schedule a consultation to discuss your project!

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  1. information are really good. If I market a new Brand in China, how long time you think it will take to sell the first unit?
    What is the Marketing & Sales budget that you advise for the first year?
    Any data about a previous company selling Home Appliance in China and success?
    Air Purifiers Market in China has a Grow of 18% untill 2021 right?

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