Online sellers in Southeast Asia optimistic

by ANIS HAZIM / photo by HUSSEIN SHAHARUDDIN

FIFTY-TWO percent of online sellers in Southeast Asia saw strong sales growth in the first half of 2021 (1H21) despite uncertainties related to the pandemic.

According to Lazada’s Digital Commerce Confidence Index, 70% of online sellers expected more than 10% additional growth in the third quarter of 2021 (3Q21), while 33% were extremely confident that their sales volume would increase by more than 30% in the same period.

Lazada Chief Strategy Officer Magnus Ekbom said the Digital Commerce Confidence Index aims to shed light on forward-looking indicators and sentiment among small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Southeast Asia.

“Many SMEs have adopted new technologies and acquired digital capabilities to transform and sustain their businesses.

“Despite the difficult health situation and current challenges, our index shows that sellers remain both resilient and optimistic for the future,” he said in a statement yesterday.

“optimistic” score of 64, with 0 being “very pessimistic” and 100 being “very optimistic” on the spectrum.

Ekbom said the positive sentiment among sellers could be attributed to significant changes in the spending habits of Southeast Asian consumers, with greater diversification between online and offline shopping.

“With 47% of consumers reducing their offline purchases and 30% increasing their online spending last year, the Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated the expansion of digital commerce and made it a crucial battleground for sellers. who are looking to expand their activities, “he noted. .

The index also saw strong growth momentum across all retail categories, with sellers of fast-moving electronics and consumer goods being the main beneficiaries of a home economy, 53% of them registering strong growth in 1H21.

Vendors in the fashion segment took the biggest leap of faith: 48% said their business had improved in 1H21, 75% expected business to improve in 3Q21, and 40% expected their growth to exceed 30% in the same quarter.

Redseer’s consulting partner Roshan Raj said immunization programs have had a significant effect and platforms have seen the fashion segment rebound with 70% growth in 2Q21 compared to 1Q21 on most clothes.

“Live streaming has also been a big boost for many sellers as it creates an interactive environment in which consumers can shop, which is a big driver for fashion as the segment is customer to customer and requires a strong element of trust via interactions, ”said Roshan.

However, he predicted that fashion vendors could see moderate sales in the near future due to the recent increase in Covid-19 cases in Southeast Asia.

Vendors also identified several key catalysts for online business growth, namely the development of a unique and differentiated offering (52%), increased user traffic (50%) and the ability to leverage data information (23%).

In a highly saturated environment, competition among online sellers no longer occurs within a simplistic price war framework, but has evolved to take on an extra dimension where technology-driven customer engagement serves as a differentiator for many. many sellers.

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