Building a Successful eCommerce Brand in Southeast Asia


Building a Successful eCommerce Brand in Southeast Asia 

With the rise of modern technology and the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, eCommerce brands such as Lazada and Shopee have experienced tremendous growth in recent years. These brands offer a convenient way for people to purchase items they need without leaving their homes. As a result, many other brands have joined the eCommerce bandwagon to increase their presence and profits. However, not all brands have been successful in their eCommerce endeavours. Here are several ways to succeed in eCommerce in Southeast Asia (SEA). 

Nature of business and product 

Numerous eCommerce businesses focus on providing specific products or services through their online platforms. To gain a competitive edge over other brands, consider offering a product or service that is in high demand and isn't frequently sold by other brands to launch your business. Another approach is to collaborate with other businesses and help them sell their products through your eCommerce brand, much like the successful business models of Lazada and Shopee. 

Web design 

To attract customers to your eCommerce site, it's essential to make it visually appealing and user-friendly, encouraging users to visit frequently. It's crucial to prioritise organising the site and making it easy to navigate, allowing users to browse with ease. Another important consideration is Internet speed, as using an excessive number of images and videos on the site can slow it down, resulting in users losing patience and interest in your brand. It's best to use an appropriate number of visuals to capture users' attention without overdoing it, causing your site to become too slow for users to want to continue using it. Look at some of the award-winning website designs that you can draw inspiration from to build your website.  

Customer service 

Improve customer service on your website by incorporating chat boxes for customers to interact with knowledgeable representatives. Ensure representatives are trained to handle inquiries professionally. You can also use an interactive digital pop-up chat that provides quick answers to frequently asked questions. Fast responses to customers’ enquiries would increase the chances of customers making a purchase on your eCommerce platform. By implementing these strategies, you can create a positive impression on website visitors, leading to increased satisfaction and loyalty. 

Understanding the importance of good customer service in creating a better customer experience, ADA has partnered with Omcom, a conversational commerce platform for businesses, to provide a convenient solution for businesses in customer support management for SEA’s marketplaces. As the old saying goes, charity starts at home. The greater the emphasis on customer centricity of a company, the higher the employee satisfaction in terms of service quality extended towards customers. 

Mobile app 

In today's digital age, it's essential to ensure that your website is accessible to customers on multiple devices, including smartphones. In many countries within SEA, where mobile phone usage has surged in recent years, it's even more critical to offer a phone app that complements your computer-accessible website. By offering a mobile app, you can cater to your customers' on-the-go needs and provide them with seamless access to your products or services. With a mobile app, you can provide push notifications, alerts, and updates to keep your customers engaged and informed about your latest offers and promotions. 

While designing a mobile app, it is crucial to have user-friendliness in mind. According to Google, 29% of smartphone users will immediately switch to another site or app if they can't find the information they desire or the loading is too slow. 

Promos and discounts/Free shipping

While shopping through an eCommerce platform might seem cheaper than going to a physical store, there tend to be some extra costs that customers have to deal with which are not required to be paid at a physical store, such as the cost of delivery and return. Shopify discovered that the price of returning a purchase to an eCommerce business is two to three times higher than that of returning physical store purchases. To address this issue, it's important to find ways to offer promotions and discounts that are attractive to customers that will be effective and sustainable for the business. Consider providing free shipping for either all or selecting popular products on your site or maintaining an attractive basket size threshold for a free shipping voucher. This can be a key selling point for customers and help to reduce the overall cost of purchasing from your eCommerce business. By finding creative ways to offer value to customers, you can differentiate your business from competitors and build a loyal customer base. 

Thriving in the eCommerce sector 

To succeed in the eCommerce industry in Southeast Asia, businesses must strategically plan and implement their offerings, collaborate with other brands, create visually appealing websites prioritising internet speed and customer service, and develop mobile apps for customer convenience. Promotions and discounts, along with free shipping, can attract and retain customers while maintaining profitability. 

ADA provides services that enable enterprises and brands to drive topline growth through digital marketing and sales transformation across Asia

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