Helping Hong Kong SMEs grow online retail sales on Chinese mainland

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Hong Kong can now tap the rapid growth of the Chinese mainland’s B2B e-commerce market by taking advantage of a new online promotion by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) — a statutory body dedicated to creating opportunities for the territory’s businesses.

To help the SMEs develop online retail sales on the mainland, the HKTDC has announced the launch of the B2B online transactional platform, hktdc.com Small Orders (Chinese Mainland) (http://xiaopiliang.hktdc.com), and the new Baidu’s search advertising service on hktdc.com.

The small-order online transactional platform is specifically designed for Chinese mainland buyers.

“The HKTDC has been closely monitoring market developments and working with SMEs to capture business opportunities in domestic sales,” said Loretta Wan, HKTDC’s director of publications and e-commerce. “Under the new initiative, Hong Kong SMEs that place search engine advertisements on Baidu through the HKTDC can enjoy a lower entry barrier and simpler procedures. At the same time, HKTDC specialists will help companies to edit and localise their product and company listings for the mainland market. Eligible companies can apply for 50% advertising fee subsidies from the Trade and Industry Department’s SME Export Marketing Fund (EMF), greatly reducing the promotion cost.”

The hktdc.com Small Orders (Chinese Mainland) was soft-launched in the middle of last year. Mainland buyers who place small orders can settle payments in renminbi using AliPay, TenPay, WeChat Pay or China UnionPay. Hong Kong suppliers can receive payments in US dollars via PayPal and avoid foreign currency exchange hassles, the council said. Suppliers who use Baidu’s search advertising service can link buyers to their hktdc.com webpage or at the hktdc.com Small Orders platform to enhance exposure, promotion and generate more business.

Additionally, the Baidu search advertising service allows ads from hktdc.com suppliers to be listed among the top search results. Buyers who click on the advertisements will then be directed to the suppliers’ hktdc.com webpage, where they can browse for more product information. Buyers can also enter their contact information into the advertisements and connect directly with the suppliers. The search engine also allows suppliers to specifically target customers in the mainland’s first-, second- or third-tier cities.

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