Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba’s livestreaming arm Taobao Live has laid out an aggressive plan to increase its number of livestreaming channels and adopt new technology to grow its business this year, riding a wave of popularity that has seen the industry flourish since the Covid-19 outbreak.
According to a statement released on Wednesday, Taobao Live plans to grow its livestreaming channels to 2,000 with an aim of helping them achieve annual sales of 100 million yuan ($15.4 million) each this year.
To reach the financial target, Taobao Live is working with Alibaba research unit Damo Academy to develop an intelligent camera that online pitchmen can use to receive real-time customer feedback and data such as click rates and number of orders while they are livestreaming, according to the statement. The company added that the gadget will be powered by technologies that include hand-gesture recognition.
On Wednesday, Taobao Live also announced the launch of two new tools that sellers can use to improve livestream content management and fan engagement.
The coronavirus pandemic has increased demand for e-commerce livestreaming, which many of China’s merchants and celebrities use to sell products via platforms operated by Alibaba, JD.com, Pinduoduo, ByteDance and Kuaishou.
In 2020, Taobao Live generated more than 400 billion yuan in gross merchandise volume, as the number of its daily active users jumped 100% year-on-year, according to the company.
The value of China’s livestreaming e-commerce market was estimated to reach about 971 billion yuan last year, with Taobao Live accounting for nearly half of the market, while ByteDance-owned Douyin and competitor Kuaishou shared much of the other half, according to a report by market research firm Qianzhan.
Wednesday’s statement came a week after China’s internet regulator issued trial guidelines to regulate the livestreaming e-commerce industry after the sprawling business was tarnished by cases of livestreaming hosts peddling phony goods.
Contact reporter Ding Yi (email@example.com)