In this Ultimate FAQ Guide, we’ll talk about everything you might find helpful, like Alipay’s features, the story of Jack Ma, etc.
If you are a dropshipper on Shopify, an Amazon seller, or a seller on any other E-commerce platform, this short introduction to Alipay will help your business in China.
What Is Alipay?
Alipay is a third-party payment software that works over the Internet. It was officially launched on December 15, 2003, and at first it was just a way for Alibaba Group to handle payments for E-commerce.
Alipay is no longer just a way to pay for one thing. It has grown into a complete platform with functions like payments, life services, social networks, wealth management, insurance, public welfare, etc.
Alipay’s role in China is similar to what Paypal does in the rest of the world.
But compared to Paypal or WeChat Pay, Alipay may put more of an emphasis on FinTech, which has become a popular word all over the world in recent years.
In other words, Alipay’s 1.3 billion users around the world can put money into their accounts and get loans based on the huge amount of transaction records, personal credit ratings, and other information stored in Alibaba’s Cloud Computing Center.
Alipay and Alibaba Group grew quickly and well in the first decade of the 21st century, just like Paypal and eBay Group did at the same time.
In June 2011, Jack Ma, who started Alibaba Group, decided to split Alipay from Alibaba Group so that he could get a business license from the Chinese government for Internet-based payments.
Then, a new business called Ant Financial Group was set up so that Alipay could run on its own.
Alipay is now one of the most popular E-commerce software programs in the world. It has done this by following the global trend of FinTech.
Can I Trust Alipay?
Yes, you can trust it. Alipay is the official payment software of Alibaba Group, which is the second-largest E-commerce platform in the world after Amazon Group.
Also, after many years of fast growth, Alibaba Group and Alipay have gained a lot of useful knowledge about Internet security, infrastructure deployment, business operations in both the U.S. and abroad, etc.
Chen Luobin, a senior computer security technician at Alipay, said, “The global trend in cyber security is to set up a comprehensive framework for preventing and controlling risks like computer viruses or hacker intrusions.”
AlphaRisk is Alipay’s smart risk-control system. It is based on Interactive Risk Management and uses nearly 500 quantitative strategies and 100 risk models to protect transactions and find risks in real time, 7 days a week.
Alipay and Alibaba Group can be trusted just like Paypal and eBay Group.
When it comes to QR code payments, Alipay stays on top, followed by PayPal and other well-known payment gateways.
Who’s Jack Ma, the founder of Alipay and Alibaba Group?
Jack Ma was born on September 10, 1964, in Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province, China. As a child, he was friendly and mischievous, and he wanted to learn English.
Later, he became good friends with David Morley, an Australian who taught English in China, and Ken Morley, his teenage son. The Morley family encouraged Jack Ma to take a long trip to Australia, which helped him learn a lot about the world.
After high school, Jack Ma took the College Entrance Examination in 1982, but he failed for the first time because he only got a 1 in mathematics.
It seemed like the word “Mathematics” didn’t bring Jack Ma any luck, and the luck he had with English was obviously not enough to make up for how bad he did in Math.
The next year, Jack Ma made a lot of progress in math, and he scored 19 this time. But he failed again on the College Entrance Exam because he did not do well overall.
After taking the College Entrance Examination for the third time in 1984, Jack Ma got into the English Department of Hangzhou Normal University with a score of 89 in mathematics.
Jack Ma taught English at Hangzhou Dianzi University from 1988 to 1995 after he graduated from college.
In 1991, Jack Ma started Haibo Translation Society, which is still in business today. This was his first attempt to start his own business.
In 1995, Jack Ma went to the United States to work as an interpreter for an investment project for an express highway. During this time, he became very interested in the Internet and how much it could do.
Jack Ma started “China Yellow Pages” as soon as he got back to China. This is an Internet company that specializes in making web pages and websites for Chinese businesses.
In 1999, www.alibaba.com came out with the goal of helping businesses do business with other businesses around the world. The domain name in question was bought for $10,000 USD from a Canadian who had registered it two years before.
At that time, Jack Ma and his business partners, who were mostly his students, had raised 60,000 US dollars to get started.
It was a big and hard choice for them to spend one sixth of their start-up money on a simple and virtual domain name.
In hindsight, this was a good choice, because the Arabian story “Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves” is famous and well-known all over the world, and it fits with the idea of looking for business opportunities everywhere.
Alibaba Group launched Taobao and Alipay in 2003 and 2004. Taobao was a domestic E-commerce platform that offered C2C or B2C services to domestic customers. Alipay was its payment tool.
Aliexpress was set up in April 2010 as a global platform for online shopping.
The next year, Jack Ma split Alipay off from Alibaba Group and set up Ant Financial Group to run Alipay on its own. Over time, Alipay has become a full platform that includes Internet-based payments and FinTech.
Jack Ma likes to read Wuxia novels (which are about martial arts), especially those by Louis Cha (Jin Yong), and he said that he was “good at fighting with other kids when I was young.”
When he was 13, he became good friends with a number of foreigners who lived in Hangzhou. On weekends and holidays, he would ride his bike and take his foreign friends with him all over the city.
Today, Jack Ma is one of China’s and the world’s most famous and powerful business leaders. He is a philanthropist, teacher, Kung Fu player, and a strong supporter of entrepreneurs’ social responsibilities.
How to Compare Alipay to Paypal and WeChat Pay?
A Statista report says that Alipay and WeChat Pay will still be the most popular mobile payment services in China, with 2.5 billion users between them by 2025.
Paypal is taking a big lead in the international market. In 2021, it had a total of 426 million users and made $25.3 billion in sales.
Alipay v.s. Paypal and WeChat Pay
Alipay now has a lot of different features, such as online payments, FinTech, life services, etc. Both Paypal and WeChat have used similar approaches.
For example, if you’ve been using Alipay for a long time and your shopping history shows that your credit is good, Alipay might be willing to give you a credit line of $10,000 with a low interest rate.
If you pay back the principal and interest to Alipay on time, the credit line could slowly go up to 15, 20, 25, etc. US dollars.
At the same time, Alipay gives its customers access to a number of funds, like the Tianhong Fund, that can be bought directly and offer returns of about 2-5% per year.
Alipay says that 1.3 billion people are using it right now. But Paypal is more international and is used in more places around the world. Alipay pays more attention to the Chinese market.
WeChat Pay doesn’t try as hard in Fin-Tech. WeChat Pay is a payment tool that is built into WeChat, a Chinese instant messaging app that has 1.2 billion users. It focuses more on payments and life services, like paying your electric bill and water bill.
Where Can I Download Alipay and How to Use It?
Since Alipay is a well-known app all over the world, you can get it from Google Play, Apple Store, and other well-known app stores.
The steps below will show you how to set up and use Alipay:
Download Alipay and Sign up with Your Phone Number
You can download Alipay from its website, as well as from Google Play and the Apple Store. Sign up with a valid mobile phone number from your country or China.
Add Your Bank Card
Alipay works with VISA, MasterCard, and JCB, which are all common credit cards. You can also add a credit card or bank card from a Chinese bank.
Enter Your Bank Card Info
At this step, you’ll need to fill in your name and other information, like your passport number, so that Alipay’s Big Data and Cloud Computing Center can make sure that the person filling in the information is “you” and not someone else.
Confirm Your Phone Number and Other Info Registered with Your Bank
At this point, Alipay will compare the information you give them to what they have on file at your bank. Make sure the name and phone number you put in match exactly what your bank has on file.
Enjoy Shopping and Other Services Freely with Alipay
With Alipay, you can buy delicious Beijing duck from a nearby restaurant, rent a PlayStation 4 to play video games for a reasonable monthly price, and even get small loans if you are a foreigner with a good credit history.
Alipay is a good and useful way to pay for things online. If you want to do business in China, you should learn about Alipay and how it differs from PayPal and WeChat Pay.
You could also learn more about E-commerce and dropshipping businesses in the Chinese market if you knew a little bit about Alibaba Group and its founder, Jack Ma.