Larger than Alibaba: Have you heard of Pinduoduo?

When Pinduoduo was launched in 2015, there was little space for a new e-commerce platform.


Two sub-brands of Alibaba – Taobao/Tmall and were already dominating online commerce in China, the way Amazon dominates the US. These two companies generated a value of US$433 billion the same year.


Only 5 years later, Pinduoduo is skyrocketing from a startup to a great company worth around 93$ billion.


What is Pinduoduo and who found it?


Colin Huang or Huang Zheng is the founder of Pinduoduo, an e-commerce company that became the leading grocery marketplace in his country.


Pinduoduo’s name means – “Together, More Savings, More Fun.” 


It is an agriculture-focused technology platform that was created with an idea of a direct connection between consumers and distributors and farmers through an interactive shopping experience.


This platform has managed to mimic the offline shopping experience, which is the main key to its success. Pinduoduo has built communities with team purchase models, interactive games, and rewards to drive engagement, and offers value and personalized experiences via recommendations.


What makes this platform different in a better way?


Pinduoduo is rewarding loyal users with cash, free products, and other perks. This usually creates “viral” effects, especially when people start sharing links via the most popular social media networks. Another thing – the interface is not like Amazon, it looks more like a Facebook newsfeed.


Maybe Pinduoduo’s team purchase seems like Groupon’s, but these two models are very different. Groupon deals are designed by sellers, while Pinduoduo deals are managed by sellers but initiated by consumers.


Groupon is focused on goods and services like massages and fancy dinners, and Pinduoduo offers great discounts for bulk purchases of everyday household items. 

Items sold on Pinduoduo’s site are ranging from electronics, cosmetics, and household groceries to clothing. You can make a single purchase, but purchasing in bulk with your family or friends will get you an amazing discount of up to 90%.


Highly personalized


Unlike other platforms, Pinduoduo is highly personalized. 

It is based on information such as who are the user’s friends, their favorite categories, or which friends they trust; so, Pinduoduo can make personalized recommendations to every user.


Who is  Pinduoduo’s everyday user?


Pinduoduo has stolen Alibaba’s crown with 788 million annual active users. 


Its user base is concentrated in rural regions and small cities. The internet infrastructure is largely built on WeChat, to which many “lower-tier” citizens turn for social networking, information, and other needs.


How does it work?


User selects an item on Pinduoduo, and then he/she chooses whether to participate in group buying. With more people, the price starts to drop down.


This encourages shoppers to share links to the item over social media with their family and friends.


Potential buyers have 24 hours to complete a buying group, and the app is showing discounts increasing with each new buyer added.  

This creates excitement and urgency.  It’s an irresistible experience for all the buyers who love a bargain