The Chinese economy has shifted from a phase of high-speed growth to one of high-quality development, with expanding domestic demand becoming the strategic cornerstone of China’s economic development during the 14th Five-Year Plan and the following decade. Against this backdrop, China has put forward the goal of cultivating and building international consumption center cities. These cities will play a leading role in promoting sustained growth and quality improvement in national consumption by serving as a driving force for other regions to follow.
International consumption center cities represent a higher form of domestic consumption market upgrading, as well as a platform and hub for connecting with the global consumption market and attracting consumers worldwide.
Consumer behavior and its understanding will be key for retailers if they are looking to succeed in international consumption city markets in China in the future. On this note, from January 2023 to April 2023, Cushman & Wakefield conducted research on 3,622 consumers in 23 cities and towns in China, as well as interviews of executives from several emerging brands. By gaining insight into new trends in Chinese consumer behavior and the market in general, the goal is to help brand owners and retail property owners uncover the market opportunities and succeed.
With the development of technology and the increase in residents’ income in China, as well as changes in population structure and the high-quality development of urban clusters, the clustered-city middle class, the provincial city youngsters, and the “silver surfers” are gradually becoming the main consumer groups in China. Their demands, preferences, and behaviors are also showing new changes and international consumption center cities in China will need to keep abreast of these changes to remain competitive.
Moreover, brand owners and retail property owners will leverage the development and business momentum of international consumption center cities to continuously explore new sources of consumer and consumption growth, including:
- The “first store economy”
Thereby unlocking the full potential of urban consumption in China in the future.