Unique Daily Deal aggregator and analytics platform for Asia and Oceania, Dataotuan has released their December 2011 report.

Besides focusing on the movements in market share position by the big players in China, I think a different and interesting trend to pick up on, is the difference in buying behavior between Mainland Chinese and other Asian countries.

According to Dataotuan, Chinese deal hungry buyers are buying hotpot (11%), travel (10%) and beauty (7%) deals the most. However Taiwan, Philippines, Singapore and Malaysia are all buying beauty deals the most.

Such a trend is an interesting reflection on the state of the country and what people care about.  Right now China is enduring Winter, so enjoying hotpot with friends and family naturally makes sense. In Beijing, popular hotpot restaurants like Shabu Shabu and Haidilao are always packed with people.

However since Taiwan, Philippines, Singapore and Malaysia are all further south and enjoy a more tropical and humid climate, hotpot isn’t big on the agenda, but being beautiful is. Deals for beauty account for 11% in Taiwan, 21% in Philippines, 18% in Singapore and 21% in Malaysia. Why is this? This must point to the fact that most buyers are female and they care about the way they look like very much. When I travel around Asia and visit Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan and Korea I’m amazed by how much advertising there is for beauty products, plastic surgery, body sculpting etc. and is a point about how appearance is very engrained into the culture. Comparatively, I feel the beauty industry in China is still in its early stages but will grow rapidly, for now eating is a priority!

Jason is an Australian born Chinese living in Beijing, specializing in entrepreneurship, start-ups and the investment eco-system in China, especially in the tech and social area.

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