WeChat Pay targets European expansion

WeChat Pay has announced that Europe will be the next key market for its cross-border business.

The company reiterated its One For Billion business initiative, which provides merchants with one platform which enables communications and customised customer services for more than a billion Chinese consumers.

As of April 2019, the number of merchants in the European region offering WeChat Pay as a payment method was three and a half times higher than the previous year.

According to the latest data from China’s Ministry of Culture and Tourism, in 2018, more than 149 million Chinese tourists travelled abroad, and Europe was the destination of choice for 11 per cent of them.

Capitalising on the dividends of Chinese tourist traffic will be a key driver of future growth in the European tourism market, stated WeChat Pay. However, differences in language and consumption habits often affect the overall travel experience of Chinese tourists.

For merchants, lack of clear communication channels which allow for local language preferences may result in the loss of Chinese customers to competitors who are already catering to these needs.

Luxury fashion brands like Cartier, Dior and Armani Beauty have been early adopters, launching WeChat Mini Programs to manage membership, e-boutique social commerce, self-service shopping, promotions, a customisable product service, and thing like artificial intelligence-powered makeup trials.

Bradley Mo, senior director of industry application for WeChat Open Platform, said: “As Chinese customers desire more personalised products and services, numerous brands are using Mini Programs to satisfy those needs through social commerce.

“Ultimately, the three underlying functions Mini Programs realise for social commerce are increased sales, user engagement and data optimisation.”

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