At Alibaba.com, our mission is to make it easy for business owners everywhere to do business anywhere. For my team in the U.S., it means helping U.S. small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) sell more of their goods and tap into the $23.9 trillion global business-to-business (B2B) e-commerce market -- estimated to be six times the size of the global business-to-consumer (B2C) e-commerce market.
Alibaba.com started 20 years ago as an online yellow pages and has evolved into a comprehensive, end-to-end ecommerce platform built for B2B success. Last July, we opened the platform for U.S. sellers to connect with our 10 million active business buyers, and the U.S. has been the fastest growing source of suppliers since.
Our business model supports the long-term success of our customers -- which is truly our benchmark. For an annual fee of $2,400, Alibaba.com provides deep insights and tools and services tailor-made for B2B sales. We don’t take any sales commission -- whether a business sells $50,000 or $50 million, they keep their margin -- and operate as a pure marketplace platform that is not competing with our sellers.
This year has been a particularly challenging one for businesses, and throughout this crisis we have continued to invest in our platform -- offering new features to help U.S. SMBs find customers and generate sales so they can pivot and persevere through these difficult times.
When a business opens a storefront on Alibaba.com, our U.S.-based team supports their entire ecommerce journey, from storefront management, marketing and sales to shipping and logistics. Here are just a few of the tools and features that make Alibaba.com valuable to SMBs:
One of the newest ways we are helping SMBs during the pandemic is through Alibaba.com Online Trade Shows USA, a series of multi-day, online events connecting U.S. sellers with buyers globally. Before the health crisis, trade shows were the single biggest source of new customers for most American B2B businesses. So with those events halted, there was a gap to fill. Our first online event in July featured 50 American businesses exhibiting to more than 50,000 viewers each day. That’s more traffic than any physical tradeshow. And we just concluded our second online show for the U.S. food & beverage industry, with early indicators pointing to another big success for the exhibitors.
Finally, our awareness and education initiative, B2B Today, shares practical how-to articles, fireside chats, educational webinars and inspirational stories of American SMB pivots to help U.S. businesses start selling online.
As an American entrepreneur myself, I feel fortunate to be at the frontlines in enabling American businesses to access new opportunities. The stakes are high, and the pandemic has highlighted the need for more agility and creativity. That is why I believe more than ever in our mission to help businesses everywhere do business anywhere.