THE SILVER-HAIRED GENERATION GUIDE
Population: Since China’s population entered an aging phase in 1999, living standards and medical and health care have made continuous progress. With the aging of the population accelerating, the silver-haired market has broad prospects.
In 1949, when The People’s Republic of China was founded, the average life expectancy in China was only 35 years old. In the past few decades, the average life expectancy in China increased by 42 years and rose from 71 in 2005 to 77 in 2020.
Around 100 million people over 60 will retire between 2010 and 2020 and it’s expected that those aged 60 or older will account for 21% of the total population in 2025 and 30% in 2040. A third of the population, around 451 million people, are now over 50 years old. The huge size of the elderly population means that there is a huge market for products and services for older citizens.
Average income levels:The elderly in urban areas are the backbone of the silver-haired consumer group. As a result of 17 years of continuous increases in China’s pensions, Chinese elders who worked for government offices, public institutions and enterprises are in the middle income category. According to data from China’s sixth census, average pensions are 2,940 yuan per month. The disposable income per person of urban elders is higher than rural elders.
Occupation and gender distribution: China’s elderly population is experiencing a generational change as more people retire and age into the category. This new generation of older people maintain an optimistic attitude and have actively prepared for the future by saving money.
There are also 200 million silver generation elderly who have become a new force on the internet. Men accounted for 53.9% of older internet users with women accounting for 46.1%. However, 56.1% of older women are active online while only 43.9% of men are. This means women in the older generation are more likely to have higher demands for internet services.
In terms of occupations, for elders who are active online, most are retired from government jobs and public institutions and many have relatively good educational attainment. They’re China’s first group of the elderly internet users.
City level distribution online: Elderly people in first and second tier cities account for more than half of older people who are active on the mobile internet. The internet penetration rate of the elderly in first-tier cities is 15.4%. In new first-tier cities, the rate is 21.6% and in second-tier cities it’s 18.9%.
The new generation of older people from 60-70 years old are keen on online shopping: China’s elderly are quite familiar with online shopping. 83% of China’s silver-haired generation say they like surfing the internet and that it makes them feel “close to the world”. They particularly value the convenience of online shopping. The majority believe that online shopping offers a wider range of choices, better prices and convenient home delivery services that ease the physical burden of going out to shop. More than half of them shop online every week, 31% shop online two or three times a week, and 22% shop online once a week.
Online consumption power: The deepening of digital life is also driving the growth of online consumption by older Chinese people. In 2021, the share of online consumption by older people increased by 1.9% year-on-year. 37.1% of seniors spent 1,000 to 1,999 yuan online from October 2020 to October 2021 and 12% spent 2,000-2,999 yuan during that time. 
Consumption preferences of the silver-haired generation: Older women are more pragmatic and focus on prices and brands while men focus on product design, material, quality and the consumer experience. 55% of senior men care about fashion and quality. Meanwhile, 56.6% of older women pay more attention to brands and 57.4% pay more attention to prices. 
Online purchasing channel preferences:The active penetration rate for seniors on e-commerce platforms is 67.2% in May 2020, which is close to the level of internet users in general. Older users also engage in social e-commerce. The top 5 online shopping apps for older monthly active users are Taobao, Pinduoduo, Taote, JD and Vipshop.
POPULAR CATEGORIES FOR SILVER - HAIRED GENERATION
The top 9 items purchased by users over 56 years old are: Healthy beverages (18.88%), diapers (9.9%), women’s clothing (8.39%), men’s clothing (6.85%), bone health supplements (5.96%), health equipment (4.48%), nutritional supplements (3.55%), immunity enhancement products (3.48%), products to help measure and regulate hypertension, elevated cholesterol and high blood sugar (2.59%).
The top 9 items designed for elderly people: Healthy beverages (19.43%), bone health supplements (9.11%), immunity enhancing products (7.87%), diapers (5.79%), mobile phones (5.54%), women’s wear (4.78%), health equipment (4.72%), men’s wear (3.9%), nutritional supplements (3.23%).
The top 9 high growth senior home products (year-on-year growth in turnover): Safety armrests (171%), neck-protector pillows (155%), lumbar support pillows (93%), electronic locks (77%), smart toilets (72%), smart clothes hangers (59%), constant temperature showers (55%), bathroom heaters (44%), intelligent doorbells (37%).
WHY DO YOU NEED CHINESE MARKETING RESEARCH AND STRATEGY?
It’s never easy to enter a new market, especially when it requires understanding the sentiment of a new group of consumers and their communication channels. By working with our agency, we offer you the following benefits:
- Helps you understand China silver-haired generation
- Helps you understand your competitors targeting China’s elderly population
- Helps you to determine the positioning of your products and plan digital marketing and ecommerce strategies
- Helps you align your offerings more accurately with the expectations of Chinese customers
WHAT ARE PEOPLE SAYING
“ Alarice helped us do comprehensive marketing research and create a strategy for China. The insights are extremely helpful and we are now ready to tackle China. Thanks Alarice team for the great work! ”
Co-Founder of Mindvalley Quests
“ Ashley, you’re living the Disney brand! Thanks for the amazingly insightful, high-energy and entertaining strategy workshops! ”
Director, Marketing at Hong Kong Disneyland
“ The number of room nights booked by Chinese clients has DOUBLED since November 2018. This is a great result! Our SMM and PR activities in China, run by Alarice, have been the major fuel behind this success. Thank you, Alarice team! ”
Head of Marketing of the
OUR RESEARCH AND STRATEGY METHODOLOGY
Our China marketing research and strategy team gives you a detailed framework that will allow you to start and grow your business in mainland China. Our methodology mix is tailored for each project. In order to identify target consumers and understand their demands and develop marketing strategy for your product in China, Alarice team will develop tailor-made proposal for your project and discuss each phase methodology with your team to guarantee results. You can find more information about or methodology approaches here.
- Online Market Research
- Industry performance research
- Market sizing
- Competitors Benchmarking
- Mystery Shopping
- Case Study
- Brand SMM Audit
- E-commerce Audit
- SWOT Analysis
- Perceived USPs
- Value Perceived
- Online Survey
- Consumer Panel
- Focus Groups
- In-depth interviews
- Offline intercepts
- Semantics ( usage differentiation )
- Social listening
- Ethnographic research
- Sentiment Analysis
- Sensory Analysis
- Consumer Journey Tracking
- Brand Positioning review
- Brand pricing strategy review
- Market channels strategy
- Content strategy
- SMM strategy
- KOL/Influencer strategy
- Roadmap timeline budget
- Seasonal events / campaigns
- Conversion funnel strategy
YOUR CHINA MARKETING TEAM
We have an unmatched ecosystem of services to help clients worldwide build their brand in China from 0 and enhance performance for those already in the market:
- Chinese Social Media Account Set Up. Chinese social media account set up and verification are steps which seem easy to handle. However, for newcomers, it can be a challenging process, especially when interfaces are only in Chinese or the English version is very different. Our team will help you with the list of documents needed, account options and the rest of the verification process. We also do account migration, account mergers, integration and more.
- Digital Brand Audit. We can do a full spectrum analysis of your digital marketing matrix and point out what’s effective, what’s hitting the mark, what’s missing and what needs urgent attention.
- Chinese Social Media Marketing. With our understanding of China’s unique social media landscape, we’ll help to select the most suitable platforms for your services and products and turn them into effective marketing channels with creative content. Apart from China’s top social networks, WeChat and Weibo, we also work with niche Chinese social media platforms suitable for different industries.
- KOL Marketing and Campaigns. Working with bloggers in China is very different from in most Western countries. In order to succeed in China, key opinion leader (KOL) marketing is not an option, it’s a necessity.
- Chinese Brand and Product Naming. Choosing the right brand name for the China market is one of the most sensitive aspects of an entrance strategy. We help with China brand name and slogan development.
- Digital Online PR . We help with China PR strategy to get attention from users and visibility in the market.
As each project is unique, we also organize free consultations to discuss your projects and suggest solutions. Contact us and we’ll help you turn your business goals into real outcomes.
How big is the silver-haired economy in China?
Benefiting from the aging population and government policies to support the elderly economy, the silver economy reached 5.4 trillion yuan in 2020, with an annual growth rate of 25.6%.
For relevant brands, this is an opportunity market that cannot be missed. If you want to enter the Chinese elderly market from scratch, we provide local branding services, including brand and product naming, logo design,product guidelines and more.
What is the connection between the silver-haired and the pet lovers?
Due to the one-child policy and the rapid development of China’s urban clusters, many of the children of the elderly have migrated to the big cities to work, while aging has also increased the number of elderly people living alone. More and more elderly people who live alone choose to keep pets to accompany them and regard them as their “family”. At the same time, which promotes the development of a “pet economy”.
What is the economic level of the elderly in China？
The economic strength of China’s elderly population is becoming stronger and stronger,
According to data from China’s sixth census, average pensions for them is 2940 yuan per month. Due to China’s filial piety culture, children in China will also give their parents financial support for life. Around 25 million seniors in China have relatively higher incomes, living on more than US $50 a day.
We offer consumer research, product testing and other services based on creative insights and reliable data. We can further provide you with marketing strategy services. It is worth noting that we have unique advantages in content and visual optimization such as video content development. We also have more than 10 years of marketing experience in marketing strategy planning.
If you do have it, provide your Chinese business registration, the account administrator’s details and phone bills and the company’s address.
We can also do account migration, account mergers, integration and more.