Elinor Li, Head of Business Unit 1 & Kyle He, Associate Operations Specialist: People of Pattern

Ronald Wu

April 4, 2022

 

Clea Boyd-Eedle

April 4, 2022

At Pattern, we believe our people are integral to our success. With more than 1,170 team members and 10 office locations across the globe, we’re proud to have some of the world’s best and brightest minds working to make Pattern great. Our #People of Pattern series puts a spotlight on our people – their responsibilities, achievements, and why they choose to work at Pattern.

This week we spoke with two members of our China team based in our Guangzhou office - Elinor Li, Head of Business Unit 1, and Kyle He, Associate Operations Specialist. Both joining us in mid-2021, they have leveraged their expertise to make great contributions to our operations in the Chinese market, in particular the selling of health supplements and healthcare products.

Could you tell me a bit about your role and experience working at Pattern?

Elinor: I started working at Pattern last August and am now leading one of the business units in Guangzhou, with healthcare products as my team’s focus. At Pattern, my main responsibility is building sales channels on Chinese local marketplaces for our brand partners. I am also in charge of compliance matters for the products we are selling, engaging with regulators on necessary licenses and documents for products to be on sale.

Kyle: I became a member of Pattern last July. My main responsibility here is to review marketing materials for healthcare products, as developed by my team members. I have pharmacological knowledge, thanks to my education and previous work experience. I ensure the accuracy of those materials in terms of context and highlight the product’s benefits to better resonate with customers. I am also involved in assisting our brand partners with any customs clearance issues. Pattern can help products move through customs quickly by explaining the product’s ingredients to the agents.

Why do you choose to work at Pattern?

Elinor: The great potential to grow is the main reason I chose to work at Pattern, as I saw its management team’s agility in running the business and thorough understanding of the Chinese market. Before Pattern, I worked at several state-owned enterprises, and worked with some global names in the pharmaceutical industry. I can tell Pattern’s flat organisational structure is the best fit for ecommerce nature, as it offers swiftness. For example, my team was requested by Tmall for a price adjustment on some product listings on the eve of Singles’ Day 2021. None of my previous workplaces would be able to accommodate such a short-notice request. Here, the leadership culture and organisational structure encourage fast reaction, allowing me and my team to tackle the challenge successfully.

Another thing I recognise is Pattern’s global expansion strategy. Most of our Chinese local competitors can only serve foreign brands with local offices in China. We are on the upper hand but Pattern, with the active collaboration among its talents in major markets around the globe, can provide professional service to clients in the same time zone and the same language.

Kyle: I graduated from a pharmaceutical university in China and was then hired at a state-run science academy. Under the leadership of a renowned scholar, I worked on research and development, production, marketing, amongst other responsibilities, for healthcare products and health supplements. It was an enlightening experience, but my development was hindered by the bureaucracy, due to the organisation’s complex structure and excessive regulations. I saw delivering concrete results as my sole purpose at the job. I eventually made up my mind to leave the private sector, striving for a more agile workplace to turn my knowledge into actions. At Pattern, I am pleased to contribute my expertise to a company that yields remarkable, tangible results.

What’s the most rewarding part of working at Pattern?

Elinor: Pattern has the ideal environment for me to fully exert my experience in the healthcare and ecommerce industries, as well as my bilingual communication skills in Chinese and English. What I enjoy most is the autonomy at work. Take the building of sales channels as an example. In my previous workplaces, I was expected to follow established rules, with narrow room to experiment with my ideas, even though I was in senior executive positions. Here, I have plenty of chances and sufficient trust and autonomy to plan, endeavour and execute the strategies I develop with my team. That’s exactly what I strive for in my career – to prove my capabilities in a fast-paced environment.

Kyle: My motivation at work is boosted greatly by Pattern’s workplace culture, particularly the close collaboration with team members that I never experienced at my previous workplaces. The lack of teamwork undermined efficiency, and eventually, those who were originally keen on delivering concrete business results became unmotivated. I am also grateful for having ample opportunities to extend my knowledge beyond my pharmacological profession. Since working with the ecommerce veterans here, I have learned a lot about doing ecommerce and data analytics. I have started applying these new skills to complement my original profession, trying to understand how consumers receive and interpret product information from another perspective. I trust that this new skill set is greatly beneficial to my future development in the ecommerce industry.

Why would you recommend working at Pattern?

Elinor: Pattern is an ideal place for people who are creative, capable, and willing to push themselves. Our workplace culture encourages discussion and exchange of ideas on an equal footing, which is not common among local companies. In traditional Chinese companies, it is the leaders who make the decision, while the team members simply execute their given orders. I am proud to see all Pattern’s people be so passionate about the work we do. We are happy to have autonomy at work that allows us to think, endeavour and implement what we want to achieve.

I also appeal to those who want to train themselves to the highest standard of ecommerce to join Pattern. We are setting the standard for how to form a partnership with foreign brands. We know some ecommerce agencies focus on results only. They overlook necessary and transparent communication with their brand partners. We always attach great importance to integrity when working with our partners. It is proven by not only the detailed and credible reports we provided, but also our enthusiasm to assist them to understand the market landscape and regulatory regime in China.

Kyle: The strategic mind and respect for knowledge of Pattern’s leaders make our company recommendable. I am delighted to see at that variety of talents are brought together to form a highly cooperative team. I know the young Chinese generation desires workplaces that offer reasonable autonomy at work and work-life balance – that’s exactly what Pattern offers. On the other hand, these innovative and energetic minds are essential for us to stand out from the fast-paced, ever-changing ecommerce market in China.

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Sept 27, 2022

Global Ecommerce Weekly News: 27th September 2022

Get up to date with this week's ecommerce headlines from around the globe. --- Amazon News --- Amazon drives renewable energy push with 71 new projects Amazon is planning to add 2.7 gigawatts of clean energy capacity through a couple of new projects as the company attempts to use 100% renewable energy by 2025. The ecommerce business will soon have a total of 329 renewable energy projects, generating 50,000 gigawatt hours of clean energy, which is equivalent to powering 4.6 million US homes every year. [Read more on Reuters](https://www.reuters.com/business/sustainable-business/amazon-drives-renewable-energy-push-with-71-new-projects-2022-09-21/) Amazon launches Prime Early Access Sale Amazon is launching a new 2-day shopping event for its Prime members only, beginning on the 11th of October. Across 15 countries, Prime customers will have access to the shopping event, with thousands of deals on offer globall, ranging from fashion to electronics to essentials. The event has the purpose of giving Prime users the chance to spread the cost of items over the winter months, 6 weeks ahead of Black Friday. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/26/prime-early-access-sale/) --- Other Marketplace News --- Shopify unveils new localisation tool Shopify is launching a new localisation tool, called Translate & Adapt, which works with Shopify Markets to offer localisation for sellers who are looking to expand into new markets. The tool translates a user’s online store into different languages, including product pages and information pages. Merchants are also able to create different shipping terms for each market using the new tool, which allows international expansion and offers a more localised consumer experience, unveiling new potential. [Read more on Ecommerce News](https://ecommercenews.eu/shopify-launches-new-localisation-tool/) Etsy is set to invest hundreds of millions into its marketing platform Etsy CEO claims that the company is on route to spend more than $570 million USD on marketing this year. Even during a time of macroeconomic pressure, inflation and rising interest rates, the company is preparing itself and its sellers for the upcoming holiday season and is focused on retaining interest from buyers. [Read more on Yahoo News](https://uk.news.yahoo.com/etsy-600-million-on-marketing-ceo-154054219.html) --- Other Ecommerce News --- Meta looks to cut costs by 10% in the coming months Meta employees are facing job redundancies as the company plans to cut its costs by 10% over the next few months. Meta reported a 22% YoY increase in costs and expenses, totalling over $20 billion USD. The cuts are expected to come in the form of job redundancies as a result of department reorganisations rather than formal layoffs. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/22/meta-to-slash-costs-by-10-over-coming-months/) DHL teams up with Quadient to offer smart locker deliveries in the UK DHL and tech company, Quadient, have partnered to offer smart lockers parcel pick-up throughout the UK. The new contactless, secure locker stations will give recipients more choice and flexibility to receive their parcels at a time and location best suited to them. The partnership plans to install 500 locker stations across the country by the end of 2022. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/21/dhl-partners-with-quadient-to-offer-smart-locker-delivery/) The online fashion market is set to be worth nearly $170 billion USD in 2025 The European online fashion retail market is set to grow 50% by 2025, with an online turnover of $170 billion USD, which is 33% of the retail branch’s total. Cross-border marketplaces prove to be the largest drivers of this growth, with online websites and apps like Vinted largely pushing the market’s online growth. Zalando recently became the largest cross-border fashion retailer/marketplace, responsible for 11.7% of the online market’s share. [Read more on Ecommerce News](https://ecommercenews.eu/online-fashion-market-worth-e175-billion-in-2025/)
Sept 26, 2022

Top 5 Ways to Prepare for Peak with Google Ads

Peak season is almost upon us and with all signs pointing to it starting earlier than ever, with Christmas gifting searches now ramping up in August and September, it’s time to start preparing for peak. In this article, we’re sharing our top five tips for planning and preparing for peak season with Google Ads and the strategies required to get your Paid Search ready so you can drive success over this crucial period.

1. Go Early

In 2021, gifting search terms started increasing in popularity in August. The general trend is that people are looking, researching and weighing their options early, so it’s best to start your Paid activity early to ensure that you’re capturing that early research traffic. This will help drive revenue alongside aiding those consumers who are in their research phase.

From 2020 to 2021, spend during Cyber Week actually only rose 2% but in the weeks leading up to it, it increased by 16%. However, Cyber Week is still the biggest period during the latter half of the year, accounting for 23% of all online spend by consumers over peak. Being prepared and starting early will help you to maximise your time during this period.

2. Get Ready for Privacy Changes

 According to Google, 48% of global consumers have stopped buying or using a service due to privacy concerns. Privacy is front of mind when consumers are shopping online and we know that Google is phasing out 3rd party cookies in 2023. This is going to make it much harder to track users online and it’s something that brands need to think about this now – waiting isn’t an option.

From a Google Ads point of view, you want to ensure you have set up the Google Ads tag across your site and have enabled ‘Enhanced Conversions’, which ensures all conversions are tracked and allows you to monitor other actions such as ‘Add to Cart.’ This is relatively easy to set up, especially if you use ‘Google Tag Manager’.

It’s also vitally important that you build up your first-party data during this time as this is data you own and it can be used when targeting consumers that have provided your brand with their email address. Pattern’s own experience shows that by segmenting and using first-party data, you can see a 10% improvement in revenue and ROI.

3. Ensure Consumers Can Discover your Brand

A full-funnel approach is now more important than ever as consumers become more discerning and have more choices than ever of where to shop.

Pattern has seen success with Google Ads’ ‘Discovery Campaigns’ (image-based ads that appear on Google platforms such as Gmail and the Google app), which have driven success both from a traffic and revenue perspective.

The performance of these campaigns is significantly enhanced by adopting a segmented and nuanced approach to first-party data and incorporating these into your campaigns. Other options for a full-funnel approach include YouTube and testing bidding on keywords that are more representative of the research phase. (e.g. ‘best baby clothes’ for a baby clothes brand)

4. Get Moving with Performance Max

Earlier this year, Google announced that they were moving away from Smart Shopping and launched Performance Max. This is a new campaign type that incorporates features and placements from Smart Shopping but expands them onto other platforms such as Gmail but also alternative creative options, such as images and videos.

Since Google has already started automatically upgrading Smart Shopping campaigns to Performance Max, expect to see some fluctuations in the first 2 weeks following the switch over but results generally seem positive. We recommend upgrading sooner rather than later to limit any potential impact to peak period.

5. Flight Budgets Accordingly

Peak period will be even more competitive than in 2021 and you’ll need your budgets to support this period, we recommend boosting budgets in October to start capturing that early peak traffic. As we enter November and the Cyber Period, start early and make sure you are capturing those consumers looking for early bargains, ensuring you are being nimble in your optimisations and reacting to the data that you are seeing.

Overall, peak period is vital to help drive your sales and by preparing early, you will see strong results and drive success for your brand. If you want to discuss how your brand can navigate this next peak period, contact us to discuss your options with our performance team now.

Sept 20, 2022

Global Ecommerce Weekly News: 20th September 2022

Get up to date with this week's ecommerce headlines from around the globe. --- Amazon News --- Amazon to raise pay and add extra work benefits for delivery drivers Following the rise in fuel prices and protests by Amazon workers, the ecommerce giant is raising its delivery drivers’ pay and adding more work benefits. Amazon has mentioned that it will be investing $450 million into rate increases along with an education program and a Delivery Service Partners program. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/14/amazon-to-raise-delivery-drivers-pay-and-add-more-work-benefits/) Amazon announces it will give away shipping software to merchants at no cost Amazon has recently announced that it will be giving ecommerce merchants free software to manage shopper orders on and off its platform as it extends its reach. The ecommerce giant will be ending monthly costs for sellers using Veeqo, a shipping software it recently acquired and instead offer to them a new, free shipping software. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/16/amazon-to-give-away-shipping-software-to-merchants/) --- Other Marketplace News --- Walmart unveils new virtual fitting rooms In an effort to drive clothing sales, Walmart has launched virtual fitting rooms while competitors reduce spending amid the cost of living crisis. The virtual try-on tool can be used by Walmart customers to virtually measure the clothing items and see how the products would look on them. Shoppers will now be able to see how over 270,000 clothing items on Walmart’s ecommerce site would look on their bodies. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/15/walmart-launches-virtual-fitting-rooms-to-drive-clothing-sales/?utmsource=Retail+Gazette+Subscribers&utmcampaign=2da7f0f8f8-EMAILCAMPAIGN202209150742&utmmedium=email&utmterm=0d23e2768b6-2da7f0f8f8-61040615) THG slashes sales and profit expectations The Hut Group has slashed its forecasts for 2022 as rising interest rates, inflation and energy costs take a toll on consumers. Previously, THG estimated its sales growth to be between 22-25% but after a recent evaluation, has lowered this prediction to between 10-15%. Initial predictions did not take into account the negative effects of ceasing sales in Russia and Ukraine along with the impact that the cost-of-living has had on consumer spending. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/15/thg-slashes-forecast-as-cost-of-living-crisis-hits-consumers-wallets/) --- Other Ecommerce News --- DHL and Post Office team up to provide click and collect services Through a partnership between delivery company, DHL and Post Office, a new click and collect service is to be tested at Post Offices before rolling out to over 1000 branches across the UK. Online shoppers will now have the option of choosing their local Post Office as a collection point, and DHL will fulfil the delivery aspect, opening up networks for both parties. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/14/post-office-partners-with-dhl-express-to-provide-click-and-collect-services/) US consumer watchdog plans to further regulate the BNPL sector The US Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has raised concerns regarding the collection of consumer data and the fast-growing nature of the BNPL sector, which includes companies such as Affirm and Klarna. The CFPB is worried that these companies could be negatively impacting consumers’ financial health and aims to put better regulations in place to ensure consumers are safe and empowered. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/16/us-consumer-watchdog-to-start-regulating-bnpl-sector/) Japanese ecommerce market estimated to grow by 6.9% in 2022 The ecommerce market in Japan, largely dominated by domestic online retailers including Reakuten and Mercari, is set to reach $194.3 billion USD in 2022, after seeing an annual compound growth rate of 5.2% between 2018 and 2021. This makes Japan the fourth leading ecommerce market globally, following China, the US, and the UK. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/13/japan-ecommerce-market-to-grow-by-6-9-in-2022/) Ecommerce brands are spending more on TikTok ads TikTok may soon be surpassing Facebook and Google as the most lucrative advertising channel, with ecommerce brands spending 60% more on TikTok ads in Q2. Facebook is still ahead as the top choice for ecommerce advertisers but only grew by 5.6% from Q1, while Google grew 20.5% in Q2, and Snap declined 10.8% in Q2. [Read more on SearchEngineLand](https://searchengineland.com/ecommerce-brands-spent-60-more-on-tiktok-ads-in-q2-387876)