TLDR; 95% of international websites don’t work inside China. This article reviews a case study performed on 150+ beautiful websites in China. The case study results show us if popular websites banned in China or if websites blocked in China.


The goal of any company website is to support your business. If your website is e-commerce, that purpose is sales. If the website is a corporate site, the goal might be to share meaningful information.

Regardless of what industry your business is in, we can all agree that if your website is unavailable, it will not achieve its purpose in supporting your business.

Most websites are meticulously planned, designed, built, then optimized with great care to make meaningful connections with users. As a result, there are many beautiful websites on the internet today.

So what happens when users in China attempt to open these beautiful websites? That is what we are going to find out.


To learn how international websites performed in China, we ran a extensive case study of 150+ popular international websites.


How do we determine if a website works in China?

There are two checks we need to perform to conclude if a website works in China or not.

1. How fast is the site in Mainland China?

To determine if the site’s upload speed passes or fails, we used a 3rd party China speed test to eliminate any bias. Then we compared the speed test with a site that is known to work fast in China. If the site’s content is accessible to most Chinese people it’s considered a 👍 pass. If not, it 👎 fails.

This figure shows how fast the website loads across Mainland China (green = fast, red = slow. grey/white = inaccessible).

Pass Fail Example
Pass Fail Example

The test on the left is considered a Pass, whereas the right is considered a failure because it is either slow or inaccessible across much of China.

2. Does the website operated by the business comply with the laws in China?

The second part of the test is a must for most businesses or organizations, not optional.

If the site has an ICP License displayed at the footer of its website, it’s a green check 👍. If the site is missing the ICP, it’s considered a failure 👎.

If you are unsure why the ICP is a must, read Untold facts about ICP for China and why you should get it.

Finding if a website has an ICP license is pretty straightforward, just scroll to the bottom of the page, if you see a number like this (see below Nike’s websites for China), then the business behind the website has an ICP for China. If not, they don’t have it. You can check if your website has it or not.

Below is an example of Nike’s website in China, and its ICP number.

Nike's ICP Number for China 👍👍
Nike's ICP Number for China 👍👍


How did we choose the websites to test?

First, we selected 15 popular digital experience platforms (DXP).

We then selected ten popular websites from each of DXP’s case studies and considered these websites to follow the selected DXP’s best practices.


Case Study Results

So we don’t overwhelm you with results here, we randomly display the summary for 2 of the websites from the 10 for each DXP. Click on the website below to see the full case study results.


Case Study 1: Acquia

Images on Moderna's website are not accessible in China
Images on Moderna's website are not accessible in China
  • Website: www.moderna.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎
UNICEF's Access Speed is Slow if Accessible in China
UNICEF's Access Speed is Slow if Accessible in China
  • Website: www.unicef.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎




Case Study 2: Adobe Experience

AutoDesk's websites speed test across China
AutoDesk's websites speed test across China
  • Website: www.autodesk.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Pass 👍
McLaren's websites speed test across China
McLaren's websites speed test across China
  • Website: cars.mclaren.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎




Case Study 3: Bloomreach

Rocket Lawyer' websites speed test across China
Rocket Lawyer' websites speed test across China
  • Website: www.rocketlawyer.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎
Williams-Sonoma' websites speed test across China
Williams-Sonoma' websites speed test across China




Case Study 4: Liferay

MacDon's websites speed test across China
MacDon's websites speed test across China
  • Website: www.macdon.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎
RAM's websites speed test across China
RAM's websites speed test across China




Case Study 5: Optimizely

Mazda's Access Speed is Slow if Accessible in China
Mazda's Access Speed is Slow if Accessible in China
  • Website: www.mazda.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎
Monterey Bay Aquarium's websites speed test across China
Monterey Bay Aquarium's websites speed test across China




Case Study 6: Oracle Cloud

VideoJet's Access Speed is Slow if Accessible in China
VideoJet's Access Speed is Slow if Accessible in China
  • Website: shop.videojet.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Pass 👍
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎
Lululemon' websites speed test across China
Lululemon' websites speed test across China




Case Study 7: SAP

FC Barcelona's Access Speed is Slow if Accessible in China
FC Barcelona's Access Speed is Slow if Accessible in China
Pearson's websites speed test across China
Pearson's websites speed test across China
  • Website: www.pearson.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎




Case Study 8: Salesforce Commerce

Puma.com's speed test across China
Puma.com's speed test across China
  • Website: www.puma.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎
Images on TAG Heuer's website are not accessible in China
Images on TAG Heuer's website are not accessible in China
  • Website: www.tagheuer.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎




Case Study 9: Shopify

www.manutd.com access speed across mainland China (green: fast, red: slow)
www.manutd.com access speed across mainland China (green: fast, red: slow)
  • Website: www.manutd.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎
cettire.com access speed across mainland China (green: fast, red/orange: slow)
cettire.com access speed across mainland China (green: fast, red/orange: slow)
  • Website: www.cettire.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎




Case Study 10: Sitecore

Images on the Jabra's website are not accessible in China
Images on the Jabra's website are not accessible in China
  • Website: www.jabra.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎
Images on the JCB's website are not accessible in China
Images on the JCB's website are not accessible in China
  • Website: www.jcb.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎




Case Study 11: Contentful

Images on Peloton's website are not accessible in China
Images on Peloton's website are not accessible in China
  • Website: www.onepeloton.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎
Sydney Airport's Access Speed is Slow if Accessible in China
Sydney Airport's Access Speed is Slow if Accessible in China




Case Study 12: DatoCMS

Vercel's Access Speed is Slow if Accessible in China
Vercel's Access Speed is Slow if Accessible in China
  • Website: www.vercel.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎
Images on Polestar's website could be accessible in China
Images on Polestar's website could be accessible in China
  • Website: www.polestar.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎




Case Study 13: Drupal

Images on NASA's global website are not accessible in China
Images on NASA's global website are not accessible in China
  • Website: www.nasa.gov
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎
Images on Arsenal's website are not accessible in China
Images on Arsenal's website are not accessible in China
  • Website: www.arsenal.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎




Case Study 14: Sanity CMS

Equinox's Access Speed is Slow if Accessible in China
Equinox's Access Speed is Slow if Accessible in China
  • Website: www.unilever.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎
Images on Volvo's website are not accessible in China
Images on Volvo's website are not accessible in China




Case Study 15: WordPress

Disney's Access Speed is Slow if Accessible in China
Disney's Access Speed is Slow if Accessible in China
WP Engine's Access Speed is Slow if Accessible in China
WP Engine's Access Speed is Slow if Accessible in China
  • Website: www.wpengine.com
  • China Speed Test Results: Fail 👎
  • China Legal Test Results: Fail 👎




Case Study Results Summary

The results showed us that none of the popular websites tested were banned in China. However, websites blocked in China were more common as many of the popular websites didn’t work throughout China.

Here are the results of the 150+ well known websites that we visited:

  • 4% Passed Legal Test
  • 2% Passed Speed Test
  • 0% Passed both Speed & Legal Tests

This study shows that 95%+ of beautiful international websites don’t work in China. Click here to see all 150+ detailed case study results.

In short, if your business is going to China, make sure your website passes the two tests we mentioned above, a compliant site, and a good viewing experience for your users in China.

Reducing page load time by 0.1 seconds will increase the conversion rate by 8%.

Google, Deloitte

No one likes a slow website including search engines like Baidu. If you plan to have an SEO presence in China, you will want to ensure that your website loads fast here.

If you need help going to China, or want to learn how your website performs in China, please contact us, we are happy to help.