China group buying market hit US$ 213 million (RMB 1.35 billion) in sales in January of this year, up 255% yoy, according to a report by Tuan800.com, a daily deals aggregator slash group buying market researcher.

The report has found that local services represented over 84% of all deals, or US$ 174 million (RMB 1.1 billion), highlighting Chinese group buying marketing has been marching towards a new phase where daily deals are more about local merchants rather than online shopping (check out Taobao’s Juhuasuan, whose deals are mainly consist of items sold online through Taobao Marketplace). The former is more of ‘ from online to offline’, the original idea behind group buying.

According to tuan800.com, as of late January there’re 3790 in the market, plunged from the peak of nearly 6000 in last year. And the Top 10 (see chart 1) grabbed more than 92% of the market in total, leaving the remaining 3780 Chinese daily deals sites in scramble for the less than 8% market, the status quo shows that a more serious market consolidation is a sure thing to come up in this year. Tuan800 estimated that the consolidation will be coming in the second quarter.

chart 1: China Daily Deal Services Top 10 (RMB Yuan)

 

As for cities, Shanghai (RMB 145 million), Beijing (RMB 133 million) and Guangzhou (RMB 57 million) the three tier one cities ranked in the top 3 in terms of sales with Shenzhen, Tianjing, Chongqing, Chendu, Xi’an, Nanjing and Hangzhou following.

Also, amid the Top 10 service, Meituan was assessed as the “Best Service Quality” winner, according to a Tuan800 survey.