Alibaba Group Holding Ltd Uses Women’s Bra Size To Predict Shopping Habits

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We reported yesterday that Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (NYSE:BABA) has a vast amount of data that it can use to boost its sales and profitability. The company is using data related to intimate apparel purchases to predict consumers’ shopping habits. Data crunchers at Alibaba have discovered (Chinese) that women who purchase larger bra sizes tend to spend more.

What did Alibaba find?

The e-commerce giant divided total spending into five categories: low, slightly low, middle, slightly high, and high. Alibaba found that only 7% women of cup size B fall into ‘slightly high’ or ‘high’ spending categories. And 65% of them come under the low-spending categories. By comparison, 33% of E-sized women are in high-spending categories and 53% in middle-spending category. Only 14.2% of E-sized women fall into ‘low’ or ‘slightly low’ categories.

What could be the reason behind this trend? Younger women with less purchasing power are probably the ones buying smaller size bras. It’s just one example of scrutinizes its vast database. During its recently concluded Singles’ Day shopping event, the company generated $9.34 billion in sales. Quartz says it was a testament of the Chinese company’s data mining prowess.

Only a few companies use predictive data analytics

Throughout the Nov.11 shopping event, Alibaba’s operations managers and data experts analyzed shopping volumes to help merchants and logistics partners better manage supplies and deliveries. Alibaba received more than 278 million orders on Singles’ Day. What’s more, about 43% of those orders were placed from mobile devices.

Data analysis has revealed some surprising facts about consumers’ shopping habits. For instance, in 2012, Alibaba found that people from the western region of Xinjiang placed most orders for bikini on Singles’ Day. That was most likely because husbands and boyfriends in the landlocked region were buying bikinis as a way to promise their partners a vacation, reports Quartz.

According to research firm Gartner, Alibaba is only among a few e-commerce companies that use predictive data analytics.

Alibaba shares inched up 0.29% to $115.17 in pre-market trading Friday.

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