Singles Day, the Chinese holiday that originally celebrated young unmarried people, has turned into the world’s biggest day for online shopping, with sales that far outpace Black Friday or Cyber Monday.
This year, web retailers are expecting to reach $20 billion in sales.
Alibaba, China’s version of Amazon, has 450 million customers in China who shop on its Mandarin-language sites Tmall and Taobao. For the first time this year, Apple, Costco, Macy’s, Target, and Starbucks are joining Alibaba to sell items to online shoppers in China, according to Forbes. So unless you speak Mandarin, you’ll need to wait a few more weeks for the Thanksgiving-week sales to start in the U.S.
There’s some good news though. Americans can—partly—get in on the Singles Day action thanks to Alibaba’s English language wholesale marketplace for small business owners, but don’t expect any name brands.
Shoppers should note that they’re buying from a wholesaler, meaning they will need to buy items in bulk, with minimums of 10 or 20 of the same item to get a discount, and shipping can take a long time, depending on where the wholesaler is based. Here are some of the more interesting things we found while scouring through the millions of items for sale on Alibaba.com.
1. Drone With a 2-megapixel Camera: $35.74
2. Santa Suits for your Silverware: $0.02 per set, with a minimum order of 10 sets
3. Simulated Diamond Ring: $0.50 each, with a minimum order of 20 rings
4. LED Rave Flashing Sequins Gloves: $3.38
5. Brazilian Hair: $12-$80 a piece
6. LED Dog Collars: $1.21 each, with a minimum of 100 purchased
8. American Flag: $4.90
9. Stainless Steel Skull Reusable Ice Cubes: $3.50
10. Acrylic Knitted Mermaid Blanket: $7.90
11. Waterdrop-shaped Makeup Sponges: $0.67 each, with a minimum of five