Roy Graff

The UK might be lagging in attracting Chinese tourists, a great city like London can still do more to accommodate those tourists who take the initial barriers to the island. Hospitality specialist Roy Graff spells out some tips for the city in the ChinaContact newsletter.

Roy Graff

Whilst retail in London is more expensive than in the rest of Europe, the sales offer great value and the selection is spectacular. Prices are still cheaper than in China. Chinese love value, so the 12-15% VAT refund at the airport is music to their ears. Chinese shoppers are keen to show off their purchases using social media. Yet they are careful not to disclose the actual spend of their purchases. Instead, they might say ‘’several credit cards have been maxed out during the shopping trip”. Retailers that wish to win new fans and loyal customers should invest engaging with  Chinese social media sites such as WeiBo, WeiXin, KaiXin or RenRen.

From surveys, a major frustration for Chinese shoppers is finding the right size (shoes/clothing). People also complain that they often have to compete with fellow Chinese shoppers in busy shopping districts. Off-the-beaten shopping alternatives would be much appreciated by the independent Chinese visitors.

Department stores, such as Harrods and Selfridges, as well as shopping areas like Westfield have invested in research and staff training, hired Chinese-speaking staff and started to offer Chinese language information. Retail outlets that want to ensure they are on the Chinese shoppers’ map should invest in cultural awareness and service training, offer Chinese language information and accept the China Union Pay payment card. Learning to distinguish the different types of Chinese shoppers and knowing where they are from (North China, South China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, etc…) to better serve them would be optimal.

More in the ChinaContact newsletter.

Roy Graff is a speaker at the China Speakers Bureau. Do you need him at your meeting or conference? Do get in touch or fill in our speakers’ request form.

China Weekly Hangout

What do Chinese tourists want, the China Weekly Hangout asked last week Roy Graff of ChinaContact. He also pointed at the huge changes taking place among Chinese tourists, and told that there is no longer ‘no size, fits all’ solution.

The upcoming cyber war is the subject of the +China Weekly Hangout on Thursday 27 June. The revelations by Edward Snowden showed that the US is preparing a military shake-out, as both China, Russia and other countries are building up their cyber war capacities too. Joining us are former security consultant +Mathew Hoover and media en communication lecturer +Paul Fox of the Hong Kong University. Moderation by +Fons Tuinstra, president of the China Speakers Bureau.

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