GDFS opens 10th Experience Store

GDFS, which describes itself as travel retail’s first membership-based global vertical e-commerce company, has opened its tenth GDFS Experience Store, in Shanghai.

It aims to have 30 stores by year end, following openings last year in Ningbo, Zhejiang Province, and Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province.

GDFS will also open a store this month in Inner Mongolia, with others set to be unveiled in Urumqi and Hangzhou (the retailer’s third location there) in coming weeks.

The experience stores allow Chinese consumers to test products before ordering them online for home delivery, says GDFS VP Diana Xi.

President Barry Chen says the average transaction now is US$200-300 across the network, with 60 per cent of members buying once a month. “For each store we are generating sales on average of RMB3-5 million a month (US$47,000-78,000).”

Chen says the company’s final goal is to build a big database that will include information on shoppers’ habits and what they like to buy.” Because the retailer has a membership-based program, it already has extensive information on its consumers.

Consumers pay an annual membership fee of US$118 to benefit from shopping opportunities through the GDFS website,= and the physical and online offers of its overseas partners. For its e-commerce site, GDFS ships goods from its warehouse in Hong Kong direct to Mainland Chinese purchasers.

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