Top chain stores sales up over 5% last year
The sales volume of China's top 100 chain stores reported an annual increase of 5.2 percent to 2.6 trillion yuan (US$366.1 billion) in 2019, recent data from the China Chain Store & Franchise Association showed.
Chain store operators also remained cautiously optimistic about their business outlook this year due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Fully 78 percent of chain store operators intend to add new outlets this year, but 42 percent estimate a drop of annual sales. Only 36 percent expect to achieve year-on-year sales growth.
The combined online sales of the top 100 chain stores increased 28.7 percent to 500 billion yuan last year, while convenience stores still largely relied on physical store sales.
A total of 73 chain store operators reported an average annual sales increase of 14.4 percent, while the remaining 27 saw an average drop of 9.6 percent.
Suning topped the ranking with 378.7 billion yuan in sales, followed by Gome Retail and Red Star Macalline Group; and the top players operate some 144,000 direct or franchise stores nationwide, up 5.9 percent from a year earlier.
Some 30 percent of department store chains and 40 percent of supermarket chains carried out renovations of existing store fronts to raise operation efficiency.
On-demand delivery has already been widely adopted with nearly 90 percent of supermarkets offering shopping convenience for nearby community neighborhoods.
Nearly one-third of supermarket chains set up delivery and dispatch facilities based on the vicinity of existing offline stores.
Nearly 60 percent offered group purchasing for online communities, while one-third of them also used livestreaming and other online promotional formats to attract foot traffic.