JD.com competes with Jack Ma's Alibaba in China's massive e-commerce market. Both companies have invested significantly in technology, retail and logistics to win over consumers. Those include opening high-tech supermarkets and testing drone delivery to reach China's rural consumers.
Gil Luria, director of research at D.A. Davidson & Co told CNBC's "The Rundown" on Monday that both companies are important to watch. While Alibaba added a media business and a successful cloud business to augment its growth, Luria said JD.com was more of a "pure retailer."
"They're singularly focused on being a fantastic retailer," he said. "They have the advantage on logistics, they have the advantage on quality and they have the alignment with Tencent, which is incredibly important because of the relationship with WeChat."
Tencent is one of China's major technology giants and its businesses include messaging platform WeChat, which is used extensively internationally and in China, where it is known as Weixin. In March, the company revealed that WeChat hit one billion monthly users for the first time.
As a result of the partnership, JD.com is able to sell directly to consumers through Tencent's WeChat app.
Moreover, Tencent and JD.com have also teamed up to challenge Alibaba's stronghold in the e-commerce space. Last year, the two firms reportedly said they would pay $863 million for a 12.5 percent stake in Vipshop Holdings, which sells discounted fashion and accessories from global brands.
Luria explained that it made sense for JD.com to invest in its business since there's still a very large opportunity in China. In fact, he added, if JD.com did not invest in new technologies and important tools, they would not be able to catch up or compete with Alibaba.
"You have to prepare for your future growth at least three, or even five, years earlier," Liu told CNBC. "For JD, most important to us is, you know, our supply chain service based on our logistics system. And second is technology."
He added that JD.com planned to reduce the comparatively high logistics costs in China. But across the Pacific, both Alibaba and JD.com's attempts to make in-roads into the U.S. have been slow.