Photo: Dr. Jean-Paul Rodrigue, 2015.
Direct home deliveries are rather uncommon in China. Orders are usually routed to a neighborhood pickup location, which is owned or leased by the retailer. Delivery at a pick up location enables a consumer to pay cash for the purchase (COD), which accounts for about 40% of online transactions, but receding rapidly. The pickup outlet shown on the above photo below is located on a university campus where many students do not have access to a credit card. Therefore, the prevalence of urban pickup outlets enables to combine the benefit of a consolidated pickup location and the unique transactional (cash prevalence) characteristics of the Chinese consumer market. Still, the use of credit cards has been increasing rapidly. There are also widely used small payment systems, namely Alipay (owned by the giant online retailer Alibaba) and WeChat.