Success was not something that Du Yukang associated with himself until he started selling clothes on Pinduoduo, China’s second-largest e-commerce platform.
“Since young, I have been an underachiever and was never outstanding,” said Du, who lives in Wuhan. Before setting up his online store on Pinduoduo, Du worked in a clothing factory, operated a street stall in a night market, and also tried selling women’s clothing on other online platforms, without much success.
Indeed, the most profitable business he ran before joining Pinduoduo was the street stall. “When it was good, I could sell 600 pairs of leggings in one day. It was really satisfying at that time,” he said. But when his customers began saying that they were buying clothes online, he realized that the heyday of physical retail was over, replaced by the rising popularity of e-commerce.
So Du started learning the basics of e-commerce bit by bit. It took him half a year to figure out how to open an online store. The online business did not run smoothly and barely made any money for three years. In 2017, he got onboard Pinduoduo’s platform after experimenting with various e-commerce platforms and learning through trial-and-error.
He soon caught a break. A jacket in a popular style became a massive hit on Pinduoduo’s platform, and he received 2,000 orders in one day.
“Pinduoduo is a game-changer in e-commerce and made this possible,” Du said. “Pinduoduo is a platform where everyone has a chance to succeed.”
It took Du Yukang just one year on PDD’s platform to achieve 1 million yuan in monthly sales. He now does nearly 2 million yuan in sales in one month, and he thinks he can do even bigger and better.
He now gets better treatment from delivery companies given his high volume of orders. Previously, couriers declined to pick up his orders as the quantity was too small. Du recalled having to deliver the goods to the express delivery couriers himself. He will never forget the time when he felt like swimming across heavily flooded roads to get the goods to the express delivery point.
Du estimates that he will exceed 1 million orders this year. His family members have come forward to help him with his business. Even Du’s father, who once refused to speak to him out of anger and disappointment, is busy helping him to manage supplies and inventory every day. No one brings up the younger Du’s rebellious youth anymore.
He plans to increase his manpower and assemble a professional team to expand his business model, conduct livestreaming to achieve breakthroughs in fashion merchandising.
“With each change comes opportunities for ordinary people,” Du said, reflecting on his entrepreneurial journey. “Ordinary people who work hard will definitely find their happiness.”