Recently, most parts of our country have been caught in a high temperature heat wave. The temperature in many cities continues to rise, and some areas even hit the highest temperature in history. Meteorologists predict that the summer of 2023 will be one of the hottest on record globally. Under the high temperature and scorching heat, the impact on the home appliance market is that the demand for cooling appliances has increased significantly.
Relevant data from the home appliance industry show that since the beginning of summer, the production and sales of the air conditioner market have been booming, and the growth rate of retail sales has led the major home appliance categories (color TVs, washing machines, etc.), and the market performance is better than expected. The market share of some brands has increased significantly this year, and the price of air-conditioning products has also risen accordingly.
The “Big Three of White Appliances” sit firmly on the front line of the market
Xiaomi and Hualing emerge
“Recently, most of the customers who enter the store are buying cool home appliances, and air conditioners continue to sell well. The store’s air conditioner sales staff have to receive 20 people a day on average, and there is no time to eat when they are busy.” Wang Xun, manager of Beijing Suning Yijia Lenovo Bridge Flagship Store, said in an interview with the media During the interview, it was revealed that during the “618” period this year, the number of customers in the store exceeded 8,000. Among them, the number of people who inquired about air conditioners accounted for 50% of the number of people who entered the store, and the turnover rate reached more than 70%.
According to data from JD 618, the sales of three traditional air-conditioning manufacturers, Haier, Midea, and Gree, exceeded 100 million in seconds; the turnover of fresh air conditioners, 2-horsepower hangers, and mobile air conditioners all increased by more than 200% year-on-year; the turnover of one-price air-conditioner installation services increased year-on-year 100%; within 4 hours of opening, the volume of air conditioner trade-in orders increased by 100% year-on-year.
It can be seen that compared with the quiet end of last year’s 618 period, this year’s online air conditioner market can be described as “opening high and steadily, riding the dust”. Even in relatively unpopular sales channels such as Vipshop, sales of a certain Haier air conditioner are relatively low. Usually increased by 20 times.
On the production side, in the face of the surge in market demand, air-conditioning companies are also stepping up production capacity to cope with market changes. According to the production scheduling data from Aoweiyun.com, the output of air-conditioning companies in June was 17.78 million units, a year-on-year increase of 38.6%. Among them, 6.01 million units were scheduled for export, a year-on-year increase of 29.9%, and 11.77 million units were scheduled for domestic sales, a year-on-year increase of 37.7%.
In order to seize high-temperature business opportunities, Hisense has shortened the delivery cycle by 6 days and improved the inventory turnover cycle by 10 days year-on-year by optimizing the supply chain and synergizing production, sales and research. Compared with before the renovation, the delivery period of household air conditioner orders has been shortened by 56%; Gree Electric has also been rumored that due to insufficient manpower, R&D personnel have been sent to the production factory to work overtime.
It is not difficult to see that the sales of the air conditioner market are booming, and many home appliance companies whose main business is air conditioners have made a lot of money. This is also clearly reflected in the macro level and related core data such as brand sales and sales.
Top 10 best-selling domestic air-conditioning brands in June (Source: Aowei Data Compass applet)
China Net Science and Technology found that among the major home appliance categories, the sales of air conditioners have achieved positive growth for 5 months, far surpassing refrigerators, washing machines and other categories. Taking the domestic online sales data in June as an example, the sales volume increased by 34.96% year-on-year, the sales volume increased by 29.71% year-on-year, and the average price was 3033 yuan, a year-on-year increase of 118 yuan.
In terms of product categories, the sales volume of the online hang-up category accounted for 84.72% of the industry in June, still accounting for the majority, with an average price of 2,515 yuan, a year-on-year increase of 31 yuan. Although the sales volume of cabinet machines accounts for less than 20% of the industry, compared with the average price of 5903 yuan, the price has also increased by nearly 381 yuan year-on-year. In terms of price range, products in the low-end price segment below 3,000 yuan became the main force in sales of air conditioners in June.
Specific to the best-selling brands, Midea, Gree, and Haier, which are regarded as the “Big Three” of white goods in China, are still in the first-line camp. Sub-brands) have emerged, and are in the second and third tier camps with Oaks, TCL, Hisense, Kelon, and Xinfei.
It is worth mentioning that Changhong is the only air-conditioning brand that has a price but no market in June. At the same time, compared with the same period in 2022, the market sales of Midea, Gree and TCL have experienced slight declines to varying degrees.
Midea and Gree sell a lot and have many problems
Service complaints far exceed quality complaints
Since the air conditioner has the characteristics of multi-scenario application and multiple machines in one household, it also has sufficient market demand. In addition, because the air conditioner itself also has problems such as the safe service life, the consumer market continues to be hot, which will also prompt companies to accelerate the frequency of iterative new launches.
Some industry analysts pointed out that with the relatively low overall inventory level of the industry last year and the fact that the air conditioner itself has the product attribute of “depending on the weather”, the characteristics of the off-peak season are obvious. Therefore, when extreme weather further stimulates market demand, the air conditioner market is expected to usher in a “big year” of consumption in 2023, as a major appliance category that is essential to people’s lives in summer and winter.
Although the monthly sales and sales data of products are the most direct feedback to measure whether a manufacturer’s products are popular in the market. However, as a major home appliance product, air conditioners are a product category that emphasizes installation and service. Especially in the peak season of air conditioner sales in summer, after-sales service issues such as installation are also important criteria for judging whether the products of this company are worth buying.
As of July 12, the top 10 online air-conditioning brand sales complaints comprehensive statistics data source: black cat complaints
China Net Technology noticed that if you search for “air conditioner” as the key word, the combined complaints of five air conditioner brands, Midea, Gree, Mijia, Oaks and Hualing, have reached more than a thousand in the black cat complaints. Among them, problems such as arbitrary charges in the after-sales installation process and high maintenance costs have become the focus of consumer complaints.
According to the “2023 618 Consumer Complaints Data Report” released by the Black Cat Big Data Center this year, the proportion of complaints about air-conditioning product service issues in the market this year exceeds 50%, which is greater than the proportion of complaints about quality issues. Based on the data from the black cat complaint platform during the 618 period, the report comprehensively analyzes and summarizes the overall consumption public opinion of shopping platforms, freight logistics, digital home appliances and other related industries.
There is a view in the industry that as air-conditioning companies continue to improve their research and development capabilities in technologies such as healthy fresh air and smart interconnection, the product level has already reached a relatively high manufacturing level. Therefore, the problems exposed on the server side will become the decisive factors affecting brand sales and market share this year and even in the future.
At the same time, at present, there is only a unified warranty standard stipulated by the state for household air conditioners, and there is still a lack of unified standards in terms of after-sales service and maintenance costs for air conditioners, which is also a problem that the entire air conditioner industry needs to solve urgently.