The use of WeChat Pay skyrocketed when Tencent introduced the Red Envelopes function. Traditionally filled with cash and given as gifts to loved ones during the Chinese New Year festival, WeChat gave red envelopes a 21st century twist.
According to March 2016 figures, this is how users on WeChat were using it’s mobile payment functions. As you can see, sending Red Envelopes is by far the most popular function
WeChat focuses more on handling low value transactions, and aims to process a very high volume of these. Around 80% of WeChat transactions exceed 1000 RMB. Between 2015 and Q1 of 2016, WeChat users having used the payments feature more than doubled, from 15% to 31%.
The sources driving customers to buy from ecommerce websites are quite evenly between JD Mall (of which Tencent owns 15%), WeChat Public accounts and other apps.
Many WeChat Official accounts are now linking their blogs and WeChat stores in order to generate more sales. Some of the most popular industries implementing the strategy are Childcare, Beauty and Travel. Many of these WeChat stores are set up using a third party platform that could be compared as equivalents to Shopify in the west. Shops created using these platforms link easily to social media, and allow brands to take advantage of recommendations from social media influencers.