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Gone were the days when millennials are the center of attention.

Projected to make up 40% of the global consumer base by 2020, Gen Z, those who were born between 1995 and 2010, is the new focus for brands around the world to market to. In Southeast Asia, this generation accounts for 277 million of the region’s 660 million population, with over 50% spending more than $30 a month on online shopping.

In his book, ‘The Gen Z Frequency: How Brands Tune In and Build Credibility’, Gregg L. Witt’s highlights the needs for brands to look beyond the confines of traditional segmentation and focus on cultivating relationships when targeting the consumers from this cohort as they are driven by sincerity and authenticity from brands and its marketing tactics.

What makes them tick?

Growing up with ready access to the Internet doesn’t make Gen Z be more inclined to do online shopping as the connectivity of it all also make them more impatient. They want what they want when they want it.

However, access to smartphones and the Internet do keep them well informed and they care more about the end-to-end brand experience, especially one that have close ties with their social values.

Being digital-natives, this generation is more attuned to technological development and constantly craving new experiences the technology can provide for their shopping journeys such as voice and visual search. The latter part is especially popular when paired with social media, another influential aspect in the life of Gen-Z. 33% of them said they’ve made a purchase after seeing the production social media.

Snap’s Eagle feature that sends users to Amazon’s app or site to buy the product they scan; TechCrunch

“Because they came of age with online shopping and branded social media campaigns, they have even higher expectations for digital shopping experiences,” – Forbes

Platforms like Facebook and Instagram are already capitalizing on their users. Facebook Marketplace already has 800 million users on its platform, making it one of the biggest competitors to existing marketplaces and increasingly important for brands to turn their social media fan page into a sales channel.

It’s about the experience

In Southeast Asia, it’s increasingly common to see ecommerce players and brands employ more creative tactics in the hope to engage their youngest audience.

Taking a page out of Alibaba’s book, Lazada went all out for their 7th birthday celebration, dubbed as the Lazada Super Party, with the performance from 2019 Grammy winner Dua Lipa and several local celebrities to create a “shoppertainment” experience for their shoppers across the six markets via live-streaming.

Gamification is also a popular strategy used by companies to engage consumers from this generation. From ecommerce players like Lazada, Shopee, and Qoo10, as well as ride-hailing app Go-Jek, they’re all employed in-app games to provide a more interactive way for their consumers to earn rebates and points to shop on the platforms.

The entertainment features e-marketplaces across the region introduced to enhance the in-app experience

Meanwhile, cosmetics brand L’Oreal partners with Watsons to introduce an in-app virtual make-up testing service on Watsons’ mobile application across Asia. The feature lets consumers create their own looks, capture it in photos and videos, then ordered the products they use to create the looks.

These experiences are only some of the examples of a unique selling proposition that can attract this generation and it’s important for brands to be more flexible in trying something new in order to appeal to the consumers. Every generation presents a different challenge for brands to stay relevant and with the authenticity the Gen-Z expects from brands, this generation may take you on the experience of a lifetime.

As the ecommerce trend continues in Southeast Asia, a wave of the new generation of moms is joining the party. These moms are relying more and more on online to help them embrace their role as a parent.

Millennial moms expressed their dependency on online for their shopping journey, especially for the Mom & Baby category, during an ecommerceIQ panel session in Jakarta earlier this month.

ecommerceIQ surveyed 1,144 Indonesian moms with results showing that 66% have attempted to purchase Mom & Baby products online. Shopee was voted as the most popular e-marketplace for this category, followed by Lazada and Tokopedia.

Mom & Baby Indonesia Online Shoppers

aCommerce Group CMO Sheji Ho on stage presenting the findings from ecommerceIQ’s report: Digital Profile Mom & Baby Shoppers in Indonesia.

Indonesian actress and Miss Universe 2007 finalist Agni Pratishta was one of the panelists at the event. She agreed with the findings and also mentioned that most women visit numerous websites to find the best deals.

“I have a group chat with other moms where we exchange information regarding which e-marketplace is having a sale right now,” admitted Agni.

Agni was joined in the panel session with the Head of Marketing Baby Care from Softex Indonesia, Wenny Damayanti, and aCommerce Group CMO Sheji Ho to shed light on the current landscape comprising Mom & Baby online shoppers in Indonesia.

What else did we discover from the event?

Panel session during ecommerceIQ event in Jakarta with Agni Pratistha (middle) and Wenny Damayanti (right).

Indonesian moms shop cautiously online

When Indonesian moms were asked about their favorite online shopping platforms, brand websites did not feature much in their answers, with only Mothercare Indonesia appearing on the radar at a score of 4%.

Digging deeper, the result is most likely related to the type of products they are more likely to buy online in this category. Following general ecommerce trends in the country, Baby Clothing (49%) ranked as the most popular product purchased online in this category, followed by Baby Gear (23%) and Toys (18%).

Mom & Baby Indonesia Online Shoppers

Top products purchased online in Mom & Baby category in Indonesia; ecommerceIQ Mom & Baby Customer Survey in Indonesia (2018)

Meanwhile, perishable goods like Baby Personal Care and Baby Food are less popular and the cause of it is rooted in the main reasons why Indonesian moms don’t shop for this category online.

Mom & Baby Indonesia Online Shoppers

Top reasons for consumers to not shop for Mom & Baby products online; ecommerceIQ Mom & Baby Customer Survey in Indonesia (2018)

More conviction is necessary for consumers to purchase perishable goods online; moms require full assurance of product quality, and one way to avoid buying counterfeit products in the e-marketplace is to purchase only from brands’ official online flagship stores.

The top three consumer-favorite platforms all benefit from their official brand-dedicated portal inside their platform.

Mom & Baby Indonesia Online Shoppers

Tokopedia’s dedicated page for brands’ official store; Tokopedia

The importance of word-of-mouth in the digital world

Brands should always take cues from its consumers to adjust and hone their retail strategy. These include instilling customer confidence to overcome the reservations mentioned above. Wenny revealed that internet habits of millennial mothers provided the driving force for Sweety’s shift to digital.

“These moms are constantly searching for information online. TV commercials alone are no longer sufficient. Modern day moms use the internet to talk to their friends, surf for product information and read customer reviews before deciding which products to buy. Sweety took these cues onboard and redefined its online strategy,” explained Wenny.

Sweety’s official flagship store is offering online exclusive offer on ShopeeMall Indonesia.

Product reviews are a key aspect for Indonesian moms to overcome the wariness of doing their shopping online, as seconded by Agni

“Reviews are the make or break point for me when I shop online. When I see a product in e-marketplace with no review, even if the price is right, I wouldn’t risk buying it most of the time.”

Unfortunately, leaving a product review is not a habit mastered by Southeast Asian consumers yet, especially compared to consumers in developed ecommerce market like the US. And most of the time, Southeast Asians are prone to leave only bad reviews as a way to express their dissatisfaction and to caution other consumers.

Brands must concentrate on encouraging satisfied consumers to be more proactive and do the same. Some brands have utilized user-generated content platforms like ReviewIQ to help with the problem. Nivea, for example, achieved an increase in the number of positive reviews with the help of ReviewIQ from real consumers for its flagship store on Lazada Thailand.

“At this stage, brands still need to incentivize satisfied consumers to help generate good, organic reviews,” says Sheji.

How should Mom & Baby brands go about online?

Sheji stresses the importance of brands understanding the nature of their products and their primary objective to determine the optimal online strategy.

“If your products fall into the luxury category, you might as well sell it on your brand website to retain the full control of your channel. However, this strategy requires you to invest extensively in bringing in traffic,” advised Sheji.

But having a website also means owning a proprietary media channel that can be used for marketing and educational purposes. Brands like Sweety and Frisian Flag, for example, use their sites to connect offline promotion with the online audience as well as equip consumers with detailed product information.

For most brands, however, if the objective is to diversify sales channels, then opening an official flagship store on an e-marketplace like Shopee or Lazada is sufficient and also easier to maintain, while providing access to a broader online consumer base.

Drawing on her extensive experience in promoting Sweety to e-marketplaces, Wenny opined that prioritizing e-marketplace sales avenues is paramount for success. Especially in Indonesia where consumers are presented with many options, and competition between e-marketplaces is high, brands often feel the needs to have ubiquitous footprints.

Wenny summed up, “Choosing the right e-marketplace is an important step in the online expansion. Selection must consider the available audience, while also ensuring that the e-marketplace’s infrastructure is compatible with the business.”

Get the full report of Digital Mom & Baby Shoppers Profile here.

Customer service goes beyond a smiley face and a friendly personality. In the world of ecommerce, where there is a lack of human touchpoints, customer service plays a vital role. When done well, it can help you increase your Average Order Value (AOV), boost your conversion rate, and create brand loyalty.

But gone are the days when customer service translated to 24-hour hotlines. In this day and age, customer service often comes in a form of live chat, recently popularized by all the hype around AI-driven chat bots.

In order to craft an effective customer care strategy, it is important to benchmark the level of customer service in the marketplace. To do that, ecommerceIQ conducted an experiment to test the responsiveness and effectiveness of brands offering live chat on Lazada Thailand.

Methodology

We randomly picked three brands from each category offered on LazMall, sampling a total of 27 brands across Lazada Thailand.

Each of the brands was asked the same single question – “How long does it take to deliver a product from your brand?” – during two time periods: during lunch time and after work. These are typically peaked online shopping hours, translating into peak load hours for live chat operations too.

Results: How Do Brands’ Customer Service Perform on LazMall?

From our observations, 25.9 percent of the brands offer a real-time response through Lazada live chat. 22.2 percent replied within 30 minutes, 22.2 percent replied within the first hour, 11.1 percent replied within 6 hours and 24 hours, and 7.4% of the brands did not reply at all.

It is also noted that the categories that are the most responsive are Electronics & Mobile and Home & Lifestyle.

Since our sample covers after work, off-hours too, this allows us to identify brands that have configured auto-replies for their live chat. Only 37 percent of the brands tested had auto-replies enabled. Setting up auto-replies is easy and a no-brainer in this day and age when everything is on-demand and 24/7.

ecommerceIQ’s observations about the responsiveness of live chat on Lazada Thailand

From our observations, 25.9 percent of the brands offer a real-time response through Lazada live chat. 22.2 percent replied within 30 minutes, 22.2 percent replied within the first hour, 11.1 percent replied within 6 hours and 24 hours, and 7.4% of the brands did not reply at all.

It is also noted that the categories that are the most responsive are Electronics & Mobile and Home & Lifestyle.

Since our sample covers after work, off-hours too, this allows us to identify brands that have configured auto-replies for their live chat. Only 37 percent of the brands tested had auto-replies enabled. Setting up auto-replies is easy and a no-brainer in this day and age when everything is on-demand and 24/7.

Xiaomi’s automatic reply which indicates the working hours and apologizes for the slow response in both Thai and English.

Most brands do add some human touch to their chats, such as using stickers and offering detailed information. But that is not enough to make an impression and the current live chat offering from brands are far from using live chat at its maximum ability.

How can Brands Improve their Live Chat on E-Marketplaces?

With these findings, brands should start paying more attention to their customer care strategies. We spoke with the Ms. Ratchaneewan Vichaisorn, Head of Customer Service at aCommerce, an end-to-end brand ecommerce enabler in Southeast Asia. Here are her suggestions:

1. Equip your Customer Service / Chat Agents with Product Knowledge

As the agents operating your live chat are an extension of your company’s brand, it is important that they receive adequate training for your products. This is especially the case for Mobile & Electronics and Beauty categories as product knowledge are often the deciding factor for shoppers in Thailand.

According to Ms. Ratchaneewan Vichaisorn, Head of Customer Service at aCommerce, during non-campaign periods, 35% of the inquiries through live chat are about products, while the number of inquiries about products surged to 45% during campaign periods like 9.9. (See how to prepare for the annual online mega sales here.)

2. Leverage the Opportunity to Up-Sell and Cross-Sell

Based on their product knowledge, your agents should be able to provide recommendations of similar products or complementary products that consumers may be interested in.

Brands can also take this opportunity to inform consumers of upcoming promotions to keep them coming back to buy the next time too.

3. Collect Data and Monitor For Customer Feedback

Talking directly to your customers is a great way for brands to collect data and feedback from end users. This information can then be used to improve a brand’s products and services. Because live chats are automatically logged, the chat histories can be mined for patterns and insights.

4. Promote Your Brand

Your customer service agent should be encouraged to offer more information about the brand to improve the relationship between the brand and the consumer. Towards the end of the chat, inform the customer about the channels that they can follow your brand for content, updates, and promotions.

These are a few tips that your brand can adapt to improve your customer service. If you’re interested in a similar audit for your own brand or a consulting session to improve your live chat operations, please contact us via hello@ecommerceIQ.asia or fill out the form below:





 

 

Customer reviews matter for brands selling online. Studies have shown an increase of 161% in conversion rates when adding user generated product reviews.

Amazon of course has become the gold standard for high quality user generated reviews. Unfortunately for brands in Southeast Asia, getting customers to leave reviews is hard. Users don’t proactively write reviews and when they do, the content is short and not very helpful.

In this article, we’ll look at some of the brands that are doing well in terms of ratings and reviews on Lazada Thailand and identify some ways for other brands to get more quality reviews.

How do Ratings & Product Reviews help brands?

Ratings and product reviews help brands increase sales on marketplaces in three ways:

  1. Getting more traffic

Products reviews are basically user generated content on a brand’s product detail page. This content helps increase the ranking of that particular page on Google, therefore driving more offsite SEO traffic, leading to more sales.

In addition, higher ratings and more content also help the brand rank higher in terms of onsite search, i.e. users searching while on Lazada or Shopee.

  1. Increasing conversion rates

High ratings and positive, holistic user reviews also help increase conversion rates from the brand’s product detail page into checkout. Based on ecommerceIQ research, social proof or friend and family recommendations is a top 3 customer acquisition channel for marketplaces like Lazada and Shopee, demonstrating how important reviews are for conversions.

  1. Improve and defend brand equity

Marketplaces attract grey sellers. Genuine reviews from real users help distinguish your products from those of grey sellers or knock-off products.

Findings from our study

For our research, we looked at how the top brands that have an official shop-in-shop presence on Lazada Thailand perform in terms of ratings and reviews.

Specifically, we looked at and compared the below metrics. (Please note that you’ll be able to download the full data set with all these metrics by brand at the very end of this article. Click here to go there right now.) Please keep in mind that the ratings and reviews data was collected separately over a short period of time so minor discrepancies are to be expected.

  • Quantity:
    • Number of ratings
    • Number of reviews
    • Number of SKUs with at least one rating
    • Number of SKUs with at least one review
  • Quality:
    • % of SKUs with at least one rating
    • % of SKUs with at least one review
    • Number of ratings with at least 3 stars
    • Average rating
    • Average length of reviews (character count)

Based on the above metrics, we identified the following patterns and findings:

  • Top 18 official shop-in-shops are responsible for 80% of all the ratings (out of 161 official shop-in-shops tracked in this experiment)
  • Top 22 official shop-in-shops are responsible for 80% of all the reviews (out of 161 official shop-in-shops tracked in this experiment)
  • Average length of a review is 83 characters
    • This is how 83 characters looks like (short right?):

      “Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Aenean commodo ligula ege”

  • The top 3 categories with the most reviews are:
    • Health & Beauty (33,002 reviews, 46% of total)
    • Mother & Baby (23,970 reviews, 34% of total)
    • Bags & Travel (3,165 reviews, 4% of total)
  • The top 3 categories with the longest reviews are:
    • Health & Beauty (avg. 98 characters)
    • TV, Audio / Video, Gaming & Wearables (avg. 81 characters)
    • Mobiles & Tablets (avg. 76 characters)
  • The top 3 categories with the least reviews are:
    • Pet Supplies (7 reviews)
    • Sports & Outdoors (8 reviews)
    • Laundry & Cleaning (107 reviews)
  • The top 3 categories with the shortest reviews are:
    • Tools, DIY & Outdoor (avg. 37 characters)
    • Groceries (avg. 38 characters)
    • Cameras (avg. 45 characters)

Full table of data (best viewed on desktop or tablet)

Want do download the full Excel spreadsheet? Sign up here with your email and receive a download link.

Key Metrics By Category:

CategoryNumber of SKUsNumber of RatingsAvg. RatingNumber of ReviewsAvg. Length of Review (Character Count)Number of SKUs with at least one ratingNumber of SKUs with at least one reviewRatings per SKUReviews per SKURating Penetration (% of SKUs with at least one rating)Reviews Penetration (% of SKUs with at least one review)
Health & Beauty2,93871,5204.3933,002982,0061,929361768%66%
Mother & Baby96250,4764.3823,97074693688733572%72%
Bags and Travel1,2876,1853.963,165607827388461%57%
Home Appliances7075,3774.222,6076942140213660%57%
Fashion1,4833,9314.371,761505835647339%38%
Computers & Laptops5481,2694.121,5516310099131618%18%
Mobiles & Tablets361,2393.972,300762626488872%72%
Groceries1061,2184.4644138565022953%47%
Furniture & Décor8751,0674.09795542912794333%32%
Cameras357014.49309452727261177%77%
Toys & Games8015544.46253531531284219%16%
Laundry & Cleaning1404664.521075860478243%34%
TV, Audio / Video, Gaming & Wearables933724.1444581464681049%49%
Watches Sunglasses Jewellery6872353.863137493923314%13%
Bedding & Bath6551973.592105666593410%9%
Motors681784.501425945454366%66%
Tools, DIY & Outdoor33814.6612337333124100%94%
Pet Supplies74324.4875555617%7%
Sports & Outdoors5674.17854661111%11%

Key Metrics By Brand:

BrandNumber of SKUsNumber of RatingsAvg. RatingNumber of ReviewsAvg. Length of Review (Character Count)Number of SKUs with at least one ratingNumber of SKUs with at least one reviewRatings per SKUReviews per SKURating Penetration (% of SKUs with at least one rating)Review Penetration (% of SKUs with at least one review)
L'Oreal Paris (Thailand)79821,4834.388,67481597570361675%71%
BabyLove (Thailand)12915,2754.405,898471041041475781%81%
Maybelline (Thailand)46412,3174.204,62649342313371574%67%
MamyPoko (Thailand)18511,1694.533,93349160160702586%86%
Garnier (Thailand)1909,3714.443,95387126125753266%66%
FOREMOST (Thailand)216,7504.162,25650202033811395%95%
Huggies (Thailand)1776,4084.626,408138102102636358%58%
Tesco Lotus (Thailand)9965,5943.962,812587186818572%68%
Vaseline (Thailand)1184,9334.464,0741946868736058%58%
La Roche Posay (Thailand)954,5904.632,255888383562887%87%
Durex (Thailand)934,0864.601,117406262661967%67%
Enfagrow (Thailand)643,6564.261,651545049743478%77%
Dove (Thailand)1223,3324.502,5631917676443462%62%
S-26 (Thailand)812,9984.131,385597269422189%85%
Sabina (Thailand)9392,3964.39988482942949431%31%
Yves Rocher (Thailand)3652,1454.427565820920411457%56%
Tefal (Thailand)2561,9484.249017215414213760%55%
Nivea (Thailand)2351,8574.238735710910718946%46%
Dumex (Thailand)1561,7333.761,334589696191462%62%
Lesasha (Thailand)861,6464.04889647575221287%87%
Tresemme (Thailand)701,4594.45703844236352060%51%
Black & Decker (Thailand)691,4594.24705796665231196%94%
Kira Kira (Thailand)191,3604.325146219197228100%100%
Vichy (Thailand)521,2664.59949704949262094%94%
Dettol (Thailand)341,0524.44379382725391679%74%
Citra (Thailand)389654.376821841918513850%47%
3M (Thailand)3029124.26330521471427349%47%
AJ (Thailand)698254.11576614040211558%58%
Nubia (Thailand)158103.981,33010312126811180%80%
Wacoal (Thailand)1547354.403374592928460%60%
Asus (Thailand)1947314.161,243584949152625%25%
Eneloop (Thailand)246524.52295452121321588%88%
Sunsilk (Thailand)656284.2831640424215865%65%
Levi's (Thailand)2616054.27303611361175352%45%
Ensure (Thailand)405914.5420257313120778%78%
Lego (Thailand)7545394.47248541481234320%16%
Pampers (Thailand)165104.842738720202614125%125%
Inter Steel (Thailand)4784844.14310541641593234%33%
3M Scotch-Brite (Thailand)1404664.521075860478343%34%
Vivo (Thailand)144143.95785421212356686%86%
JBL (Thailand)643674.1344282454591070%70%
Huawei (Thailand)43674.132027418172112450%425%
Merries (Thailand)93194.781175788401589%89%
RF Furniture (Thailand)642914.572683337378858%58%
Physiogel (Thailand)452634.64765734288376%62%
Curel (Thailand)282354.739867202012571%71%
Kuron (Thailand)242294.4311464151516863%63%
Xiaomi (Thailand)52224.3699931211199240%220%
Ray-Ban (Thailand)2542203.902997685853433%33%
3M Filtrete (Thailand)72204.197582773211100%100%
Samsonite (Thailand)422003.9716274191911945%45%
His & Her Shopsmart (Thailand)2251663.81886030246413%11%
HP (Thailand)3081583.9781772424748%8%
ADHOME (Thailand)1771513.54988349434328%24%
Enfa (Thailand)351373.72674318178451%49%
Pediasure (Thailand)601354.681035921217535%35%
3M Scotch (Thailand)601304.49675633334355%55%
Nescafe Dolce Gusto (Thailand)181284.61444016148489%78%
EMJOI (Thailand)101244.50827777181270%70%
G2000 (Thailand)991144.13765546463246%46%
Index Living Mall (Thailand)61003.9413359771519117%117%
Platong Furniture (Thailand)116993.18779334333329%28%
Era-won (Thailand)30814.77575915156450%50%
PR Shop (Thailand)637803.0760615447228%7%
PXTools (Thailand)6534.698137181835300%300%
Panasonic (Thailand)9494.141448669367%67%
Fit Auto (Thailand)8484.557561121247150%150%
Purina One (Thailand)3294.7456233102100%100%
DG (Thailand)10264.2431413391130%30%
Energizer (Thailand)26264.76156213112250%42%
U-RO Decor (Thailand)8194.4032673371138%38%
Finish (Thailand)8194.65651445250%50%
3M Command (Thailand)12174.001730554442%42%
Eastern Trade Commercial (Thailand)3173.998713363100%100%
Fisher Price (Thailand)47154.56557553111%11%
Samsung (Thailand)7154.20185332289329%29%
Lenovo (Thailand)21134.1125175992343%43%
LG (Thailand)2114.2671445432250%200%
Essence (Thailand)37104.93523752119%14%
Oakley (Thailand)8593.57105833344%4%
Vanish (Thailand)994.90774225422%22%
3M Post-it (Thailand)5674.17854662211%11%
Koncept (Thailand)2964.8021211623%3%
Bose (Thailand)2954.8036711533%3%
Vogue (Thailand)27842.6723732211%1%
Royal Canin (Thailand)7132.0024022213%3%
Big Home Furniture (Thailand)1934.00430331216%16%
Dyson (Thailand)225.0013752217100%100%
Safetydoor (Thailand)123.00272522114200%200%
Diesel (Thailand)4911.0014411112%2%
Timberland (Thailand)2115.0012711115%5%
Ricoh (Thailand)500000%0%
Microsoft (Thailand)1600000%0%
Unbranded/Generic (Thailand)200000%0%

Full Raw Data:

CategoryBrandNumber of ratingsAvg. ratingNumber of reviewsAvg. length of review (character count)Number of SKUsSKUs with at least one ratingSKUs with at least one review
Furniture & DécorADHOME (Thailand)33.301949311
Bedding & BathPR Shop (Thailand)11.001645211
Computers & LaptopsLenovo (Thailand)54.1513204822
Health & BeautyVaseline (Thailand) 4,9334.46 4,0741941186868
Health & BeautyDove (Thailand) 3,3324.50 2,5631911227676
Health & BeautyCitra (Thailand)9654.37682184381918
Home AppliancesLG (Thailand)64.275178133
Computers & LaptopsLenovo (Thailand)84.08121431377
Bedding & BathPR Shop (Thailand)13.0021421711
Mother & BabyHuggies (Thailand) 6,4084.62 6,408138177102102
Bedding & BathPR Shop (Thailand)15.0011203511
Home Appliances3M (Thailand)44.752105522
Mobiles & TabletsNubia (Thailand)7534.03 1,3211041299
Bags and TravelTesco Lotus (Thailand)5113.843049815655
Furniture & DécorEastern Trade Commercial (Thailand)73.40496111
Bags and TravelXiaomi (Thailand)2034.329496398
Furniture & DécorPlatong Furniture (Thailand)993.1877931163433
Home AppliancesBlack & Decker (Thailand)3924.221629171817
Health & BeautyLa Roche Posay (Thailand) 4,5904.63 2,25588958383
Health & BeautyGarnier (Thailand) 9,3714.44 3,95387190126125
Mother & BabyPampers (Thailand)5104.8427387162020
Health & BeautyTresemme (Thailand) 1,4594.4570384704236
Furniture & DécorEastern Trade Commercial (Thailand)-0.001831--
Home Appliances3M (Thailand)63.50283422
Computers & LaptopsHuawei (Thailand)353.622183276
Home Appliances3M Filtrete (Thailand)2204.197582777
TV, Audio / Video, Gaming & WearablesJBL (Thailand)3674.1344282644545
Health & BeautyL'Oreal Paris (Thailand) 21,4834.38 8,67481798597570
Computers & LaptopsHP (Thailand)1583.9781773082424
Health & BeautyEMJOI (Thailand)1244.5082771077
Bags and TravelTesco Lotus (Thailand)544.002876151311
Home AppliancesBlack & Decker (Thailand) 1,0674.2554376624848
Watches Sunglasses JewelleryRay-Ban (Thailand)2203.90299762548585
Home AppliancesTefal (Thailand)6974.17315751146862
Home AppliancesDyson (Thailand)25.001375222
Furniture & DécorADHOME (Thailand)1483.5497751744842
GroceriesVanish (Thailand)94.90774922
Bags and TravelSamsonite (Thailand)2003.9716274421919
Computers & LaptopsHuawei (Thailand)3324.191817321111
Bags and TravelTesco Lotus (Thailand)2163.5812573182323
Bags and TravelTesco Lotus (Thailand)893.706172553333
Health & BeautyVichy (Thailand) 1,2664.5994970524949
Home AppliancesTefal (Thailand) 1,2514.29586701428680
TV, Audio / Video, Gaming & WearablesBose (Thailand)54.803672911
Furniture & DécorU-RO Decor (Thailand)194.403267833
Health & BeautyCurel (Thailand)2354.739867282020
Bedding & BathPR Shop (Thailand)63.132657642
Home Appliances3M (Thailand)1314.2049651244
Bags and TravelHis & Her Shopsmart (Thailand)854.045064791311
Health & BeautyLesasha (Thailand) 1,6464.0488964867575
Health & BeautyKuron (Thailand)2294.4311464241515
Furniture & DécorInter Steel (Thailand)413.93963876
Home AppliancesAJ (Thailand)3294.0727763221111
Computers & LaptopsAsus (Thailand)3234.5374662472929
Mother & BabyKira Kira (Thailand) 1,3604.3251462191919
Pet SuppliesPurina One (Thailand)294.74562333
Tools, DIY & OutdoorEnergizer (Thailand)264.761562261311
Bedding & BathPR Shop (Thailand)21.0026211322
Bags and TravelXiaomi (Thailand)15.00161111
MotorsFit Auto (Thailand)484.55756181212
Bedding & BathIndex Living Mall (Thailand)744.4511561344
FashionLevi's (Thailand)6054.2730361261136117
Motors3M Scotch (Thailand)884.484661362121
Bags and TravelHis & Her Shopsmart (Thailand)213.973603563
Home AppliancesLG (Thailand)54.25260121
Bags and TravelTesco Lotus (Thailand)723.992960181713
Bags and TravelTesco Lotus (Thailand) 1,4933.8975159211138134
FashionEra-won (Thailand)814.775759301515
Mother & BabyS-26 (Thailand) 2,9984.13 1,38559817269
Home AppliancesAJ (Thailand)4964.1429959472929
Mother & BabyPediasure (Thailand)1354.6810359602121
Laundry & Cleaning3M Scotch-Brite (Thailand)4664.52107581406047
Watches Sunglasses JewelleryOakley (Thailand)93.5710588533
Health & BeautyYves Rocher (Thailand) 2,1454.4275658365209204
Mother & BabyDumex (Thailand) 1,7333.76 1,334581569696
Toys & GamesFisher Price (Thailand)154.565574755
GroceriesDettol (Thailand)24.50157521
Health & BeautyEnsure (Thailand)5914.5420257403131
Health & BeautyNivea (Thailand) 1,8574.2387357235109107
Bags and TravelTesco Lotus (Thailand)184.3312574388
Mother & BabyMerries (Thailand)3194.7811757988
Motors3M Scotch (Thailand)334.551257221010
Health & BeautyPhysiogel (Thailand)2634.647657453428
Bags and TravelTesco Lotus (Thailand)63.40556654
Bags and TravelHis & Her Shopsmart (Thailand)154.0013563244
FashionG2000 (Thailand)1144.137655994646
Bags and TravelTesco Lotus (Thailand)593.833755231714
Bags and TravelTesco Lotus (Thailand)5754.0928755926363
Stationery & Craft3M Post-it (Thailand)74.178545666
Toys & GamesLego (Thailand)5394.4724854754148123
Mother & BabyEnfagrow (Thailand) 3,6564.26 1,65154645049
Furniture & DécorInter Steel (Thailand)4414.1629953465156152
Bags and TravelHis & Her Shopsmart (Thailand)393.1018531633
Mobiles & TabletsNubia (Thailand)573.30953333
Bags and TravelTesco Lotus (Thailand)1654.3910552292423
Bags and TravelHis & Her Shopsmart (Thailand)23.502521211
Computers & LaptopsAsus (Thailand)4083.86497521472020
Home Appliances3M (Thailand)1574.347652804340
GroceriesFinish (Thailand)194.65651844
Bags and TravelTesco Lotus (Thailand)5723.72271511729289
Bags and TravelXiaomi (Thailand)184.80451122
Furniture & DécorInter Steel (Thailand)24.50250411
Mother & BabyFOREMOST (Thailand) 6,7504.16 2,25650212020
Bedding & BathPR Shop (Thailand)543.2842503173431
Home Appliances3M (Thailand)224.371449766
Mother & BabyMamyPoko (Thailand) 11,1694.53 3,93349185160160
Health & BeautyMaybelline (Thailand) 12,3174.20 4,62649464342313
FashionSabina (Thailand) 2,3964.3998848939294294
CamerasPanasonic (Thailand)494.141448966
Home Appliances3M (Thailand)5924.26187481949088
Bags and TravelTesco Lotus (Thailand)6584.0826047634239
Mother & BabyBabyLove (Thailand) 15,2754.40 5,89847129104104
CamerasEneloop (Thailand)6524.5229545242121
FashionWacoal (Thailand)7354.40337451549292
Watches Sunglasses JewelleryDiesel (Thailand)11.001444911
Bedding & BathIndex Living Mall (Thailand)212.101244222
Bags and TravelTesco Lotus (Thailand)4224.1921944796764
Mother & BabyEnfa (Thailand)1373.726743351817
Mobiles & TabletsVivo (Thailand)4143.9578542141212
Bags and TravelTesco Lotus (Thailand)2563.97128411177366
Mother & BabyDG (Thailand)264.2431411033
Bags and TravelTesco Lotus (Thailand)944.2449403599
GroceriesNescafe Dolce Gusto (Thailand)1284.614440181614
Health & BeautySunsilk (Thailand)6284.2831640654242
Pet SuppliesRoyal Canin (Thailand)32.002407122
Health & BeautyDurex (Thailand) 4,0864.60 1,11740936262
Bags and TravelTesco Lotus (Thailand)174.1515381466
Bags and TravelTesco Lotus (Thailand)3174.121263853227
GroceriesDettol (Thailand) 1,0504.4437838292524
Watches Sunglasses JewelleryVogue (Thailand)42.6723727832
Tools, DIY & OutdoorPXTools (Thailand)534.69813761818
Bedding & BathIndex Living Mall (Thailand)54.00635111
Motors3M Scotch (Thailand)94.35934222
Bags and TravelBig Home Furniture (Thailand)24.003341722
Furniture & DécorRF Furniture (Thailand)2714.6025234623535
Furniture & DécorEastern Trade Commercial (Thailand)104.40333122
Bedding & BathPR Shop (Thailand)22.00133421
Mobiles & TabletsSamsung (Thailand)154.2018533722
Bags and TravelHis & Her Shopsmart (Thailand)25.001322211
Bedding & Bath3M Command (Thailand)154.1314321044
Bedding & Bath3M Command (Thailand)-0.002301--
Bags and TravelHis & Her Shopsmart (Thailand)23.501281521
Bedding & BathPR Shop (Thailand)102.556282276
Watches Sunglasses JewelleryTimberland (Thailand)15.001272111
Furniture & DécorRF Furniture (Thailand)204.151625222
Tools, DIY & OutdoorSafetydoor (Thailand)23.002725122
GroceriesEssence (Thailand)104.935233775
Bags and TravelBig Home Furniture (Thailand)14.00118111
Bedding & BathPR Shop (Thailand)23.002184711
Bedding & Bath3M Command (Thailand)23.00116111
Furniture & DécorKoncept (Thailand)64.802122911
Bedding & BathPR Shop (Thailand)13.0014411
Bags and TravelHis & Her Shopsmart (Thailand)-0.00--3--
Bags and TravelBig Home Furniture (Thailand)-0.00--1--
CamerasUnbranded/Generic (Thailand)-0.00--1--
Computers & LaptopsRicoh (Thailand)-0.00--5--
Computers & LaptopsMicrosoft (Thailand)-0.00--16--
Bags and TravelHis & Her Shopsmart (Thailand)-0.00--10--
CamerasUnbranded/Generic (Thailand)-0.00--1--
Furniture & DécorInter Steel (Thailand)-0.00--1--
Bags and TravelHis & Her Shopsmart (Thailand)-0.00--1--

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The fourth quarter is always the busiest season for retailers and brands across the world, Southeast Asia is no exception. The wave of mega sales typically observed offline during Black Friday in December have moved online thanks to prolific marketplaces like Amazon, Alibaba and Lazada. These campaigns now occur consecutively on 9.9, 11.11, and 12.12 (September 9th, November 11th, and December 12th) and cause headaches for brands new to ecommerce.

Businesses must plan ahead well in advance with multiple partners to hit their annual online revenue targets as up to 40% of GMV can be generated in the last three months of the year.

To help brands make the best of the shopping season, these are 10 strategies based on experience working with e-marketplaces, talking to ecommerce enablers, and data from some of the biggest brands across Southeast Asia.

While this guide is most applicable to enhancing performance during the upcoming “mega online sales campaigns” held by players like Lazada and Shopee in Southeast Asia, brands can increase chances to maximize sales and minimize costly mistakes with the findings.

Let’s dive right in.

1. Promotions & Merchandising

Getting this part right may sound trivial but it’s the main ingredient for a successful sales campaign. If the product offering clashes with offline deals and/or pricing is weak, no matter how much is spent on marketing, there will unlikely be high sales volumes

This is akin to achieving product-market fit prior to scaling your business.

So how should brands approach this? Well, what are brands trying to get out of these mega sales – revenues or general visibility/awareness?

In the case of the former, brands need to secure prime real estate on a marketplace such as the homepage or category page, which are typically allocated based on attractive discounts, online traffic and cash vouchers.

In order to drive revenue, exclusive “doorbuster” deals are especially important when top competitors – official and grey market sellers alike – selling similar or identical items are dropping prices.

Mass market brands are free to offer discounts, whereas premium market brands cannot use discounting as a viable strategy (channel conflict) and should look at adding value via bundling and exclusive GWP (Gift With Purchase). These tactics work well without having to tarnish the brand in the long-term.

In the case of visibility/awareness, more budget should be allocated to advertising and promotions to drive traffic to an upgraded shop-in-shop design to make a good first impression on new shoppers.

Brands can also utilize data tools to evaluate their positive in a competitive landscape (examples include BrandIQ) and benchmark competitor SKUs, promos and pricing ahead of the online sales festival.

ecommerce holiday strategies

BrandIQ Marketplace Analytics & Digital Shelf Monitoring

Planning and approval of the pricing strategy for end year – final list of SKUs, pricing, bundles and GWPs – will take the longest time. The brand then needs to share this plan ahead of a ‘freezing period’ to let marketplaces like Lazada and Shopee evaluate and approve the campaigns. And relative to the e-marketplaces other seller applications, it will allocate site visibility.

2. Inventory & Stock

Once SKUs and pricing is set, brands need to ensure there is enough physical stock to meet the forecasted demand.

This requires scrubbing historical data, if available, and use proxy data points like offline channel sales if not.

With a forecast in place, products are ordered and inbounding slots at partner or brand fulfillment centers are reserved and dedicated to online sales. This should all be completed at minimum two weeks in advance.

Lastly, brands should set up automatic ‘out of stock’ triggers to receive emails and SMS whenever a product sells out. This can also be applied strategically to competitor SKUs too through tools like BrandIQ – this allows ecommerce store managers to respond with targeted pricing promotions whenever a key competitor SKU runs out.

ecommerce holiday strategies

Price change triggers in BrandIQ

3. Traffic Acquisition

A common dilemma faced by brands during sales season is whether or not to double down on marketing spend.

CPCs (cost-per-clicks) are typically higher during a period when other brands are prioritizing and spending aggressively on marketing. The idea behind this is returns tend to be higher too because of higher conversion rates resulting from more competitive SKUs, pricing and bundles.

If a brand can afford it, it’s recommended to increase spending during the sales season. In addition, a “warm-up” or teaser campaign prior to the big launch is also recommended and actually required by marketplaces like Lazada.

Brands also perform better when leveraging an existing customer email database or mobile phone list or building them using formats like Facebook Lead Ads well before the shopping season, when CPCs are still relatively low.

ecommerce holiday strategies

Facebook Lead Ads to build up email database ahead of the sales season

With this targeted database, brands can drive traffic during the sales campaign by sending emails or SMS to the list with promo codes to be used online during targeted dates.

While barter deals are more effective for brands to gain better on-site visibility, it’s also recommended to allocate budget to marketplace paid ads such as Lazada Sponsored Products and Shopee My Ads. These ad formats are still affordable compared to Facebook and Google ads and help acquire users when they’re already in a shopping mindset. They also help brands stand out on category pages as well as competitor product detail pages.

ecommerce holiday strategies

Shopee My Ads

But when multiple brands are fighting for the same site banner placements, exclusivity and doorbuster deals are prioritized by marketplaces over sponsored ads.

Beyond the typical Facebook and Google paid ads to drive traffic, brands can also look into non-conventional channels such as Quora Ads and Shopback. CPCs and CPAs (cost-per-acquisition) are often lower due to less competition.

4. Traffic Activation & Conversion

Driving traffic is not enough; they need to convert into sales. To do this, brands have several levers to pull.

First, upgrade to an official shop-in-shop format if not yet done already. Commission fees will increase but this format goes beyond just a badge as it improves product search ranks and peace of mind for shoppers worried about authentic goods.

Maybelline Official LazMall Shop-in-Shop on Lazada Thailand

High-conversion shop-in-shop layouts. Source: aCommerce Shop-in-Shop Design Gallery.

The typical customer journey on marketplaces goes from the shop-in-shop homepage → category pages → product detail pages (PDPs).

The product detail pages is where customers need to be incentivized to “add to cart”. PDP optimization requires descriptive and rich product titles, images, body content, etc.

ecommerce holiday strategies

NIVEA product detail page optimization

One important element of PDPs are customer ratings and reviews. Unfortunately, most reviews on marketplaces in Southeast Asia tend to be few and often, not very helpful. To acquire more high quality reviews, either connect the brand.com product reviews/ratings to the Lazada product page or if no brand.com exists, leverage tools such as ReviewIQ to generate more reviews for certain SKUs on Lazada and Shopee.

ecommerce holiday strategies

NIVEA customer reviews generated via ReviewIQ

Another driver for conversions is live chat offered by both Lazada and Shopee. This is a great opportunity to increase conversions, especially for more expensive or complex products that require product detail exchange between the buyer and the merchant.

With an estimated one-third of ecommerce transactions in Thailand happening through Instagram, Facebook and LINE, users have come to expect live chat in other B2C channels as well.

ecommerce holiday strategies

Lazada Thailand live chat

ecommerce holiday strategies

Shopee live chat

For brands selling directly to customers via their own brand.com sites, an abandoned cart email should be active to regain lost revenue as well as retargeting pixels to drop cookies for a retargeting campaign during and right after the mega sales period.

5. Customer Service

From a CS perspective, brands need to prepare their customer service team on best-selling product details, pricing and overall campaign. In addition, having a master FAQ document or wiki that’s circulated ahead of time will allow CS teams or a dedicated agent to operate more efficiently during the campaign period.

If allowed, brands may want to scale up CS staff with temporary labor accounting for the increase in demand during the sales period. This should be tied back to the demand forecast. Platforms like Helpster in Thailand and Indonesia offer brands an easy way to quickly ramp up temporary staff.

6. Monitoring

A large and often negative impact on a brand’s performance online is the abundance of grey market sellers that undercut product prices.

As marketplaces aren’t incentivized to remove grey sellers selling authentic products and will only delist pirated goods, brands can only focus on improving their own product selection, search rank and educating its consumers on its official online channels.

In addition to raising concerns to the marketplace on removing counterfeit goods, brands can use BrandIQ to track grey market SKUs or other brands that impact its promotions, e.g. Mimi Poko vs. Mamy Poko:

ecommerce holiday strategies

Mimi Poko on Lazada Thailand

7. Packaging

Packaging seems mundane in comparison to the other sales levers but it’s a customer touch point to increase repurchase rates. In addition to an eye-pleasing design and quality of the packaging itself, promotions via flyers or vouchers to drive follow-up actions such as cross-sell and up-sell.

ecommerce holiday strategies

Pedigree box design

8. Fulfillment & Delivery

Customers value packages to be delivered in a quick and efficient manner.

ecommerce holiday strategies

Lazada customer chat with merchant complaining about expected delivery times.

For brands to succeed here in the last mile, we recommend the following:

  • Organize the warehouse set up at least one week ahead of time – reserved inbound, outbound slots – to ensure delivery to customers within SLA
  • Give the warehouse the estimated order volume factoring in marketing, promotions, and competition well ahead of time
  • Prepare enough packaging material such as carton boxes, bubble wrap, packing foam, etc. to meet forecasted demand
  • Align with 3PLs to ensure its capabilities to pick up and deliver packages given the high volume
  • Prepare an on-demand delivery resource in case of over-capacity, e.g. LINEMAN, Grab Delivery

9. Business Operations

Ecommerce is a cross-functional, team-based effort, especially during the mega sales period where tight-knit coordination is the difference between hitting record highs or dropping the ball:

  • Set up war room dedicated to a cross-functional team that manages all operations during the campaign period. Prepare food because it’s going to be long stretches of day and night and weekends as 9.9 and 11.11 both happen on Sunday
  • The team needs to proactively monitor active campaigns during the day to ensure everything is synced properly, e.g. stock, price, etc. and may even needs to reply quickly to customer chats if CS is overwhelmed
  • Marketing and store managers to check all campaign landing pages after launch. Last thing needed is money spent on driving traffic to 404 pages
  • Debrief / post-mortem for the next big sale (right around the corner)

10. Website Stability

To avoid mishaps such as Amazon’s very own Prime Day meltdown, these tips apply only if a brand is running its own brand.com site, not marketplace shop-in-shop:

  • 2-3 weeks prior to peak period, perform a load test (also known as a stress test) to determine the traffic limits of your existing infrastructure setup. This will arm you with the knowledge of server limits and determine benchmark for an upgrade
  • Upgrade server processing power and network bandwidth 24-48 hours ahead of campaign day to be able to handle the spike in traffic
  • Test promotions, for sanity and determine if any loopholes
  • Enforce a code freeze period (no deployments) to reduce the risk of introducing bugs from new features during or prior to peak period
  • Prior to, communicate to web support teams to be readily available and on standby for peak trading. Hope for the best, prepare for the worse

But regardless of the above, performance will be determined by the right online channel for your brand or product category. Based on ecommerceIQ research, Shopee is a preferred platform by consumers for female-oriented categories like fashion and mom and baby items, whereas Lazada is preferred for categories such as electronics and home appliances.

Sign up here to download a Holiday Flash Sale preparation report.

Brands without inhouse ecommerce capabilities tend to work with ecommerce enablers to optimize their online performance. Contact us for a free consulting session: hello@ecommerceIQ.asia

On June 28, 2018, Alibaba announced the launch of Taobao Xinxuan (淘宝心选), which translates to ‘Taobao Selected’. After a year in alpha testing, the company’s new concept is finally available to the wider public.

Through the website or one of two physical stores in Hangzhou and Shanghai, users can shop for affordable quality lifestyle and functional daily necessity goods including home fragrance, smart power sockets, underwear, and sonic-control toothbrushes.

ecommerceIQ

Rimowa?

According to TechNode, the recently opened store in Shanghai was raided and emptied by eager customers in a mere two hours.

What is Taobao Xinxuan?

Appearance wise, the Taobao Xinxuan concept will remind many of Japanese retailer Muji, whose clean and simplistic stores offer a wide range of quality and affordable clothing, stationery, bags, and even furniture.

ecommerceIQ

Taobao Xinxuan Store Concept Design

From a business model perspective, Taobao Xinxuan is actually more like Xiaomi, the smartphone-manufacturer-turned-global-electronics brand. Its Manufacturer-to-Consumer (M2C) approach and short supply chain allows the company to quickly go from the latest consumer insights to manufacturers to create products and achieve go-to-market in a few months.

ecommerceIQ

Xiaomi Flagship Store in Shanghai

ecommerceIQ

Xiaomi Flagship Store in Shanghai

Arguably, Taobao Xinxuan could be considered a clone of the M2C ecommerce platform launched by Chinese gaming company NetEase called Yanxuan. Since its release in 2016, Yanxuan has seen rapid growth in a unique vertical that avoids direct competition with Alibaba and JD.com.

The Yanxuan model can be described as an ODM (Original Design Manufacturer) model as well. By going directly to Chinese manufacturers creating products for established global brands, NetEase is able to get the same quality while selling at a much lower price by skipping over distributors.

ecommerceIQ

NetEase’s Yanxuan website

By targeting young, mainly urban consumers who value quality and design but are also price sensitive, Yanxuan has been able to achieve rapid growth in the Chinese ecommerce space. The company reached a monthly GMV (gross merchandise volume) of RMB 60 million (about US$9 million) by Q3 2016, only a few months after its initial launch. This allowed Yanxuan to break into the list of top 10 Chinese ecommerce platforms based on GMV.

ecommerceIQ

Yanxuan Home & Living Category

Alibaba’s New Trojan Horse?

For a business to execute the M2C model well, it needs to understand what consumers want and then act on it swiftly. Considered the pioneer in M2C in China, Xiaomi is well known for asking its users directly what they’d like to see in terms of new features and products.

Another company that knows what its users want is – surprise, surprise – Alibaba. Being the largest ecommerce company in China, Alibaba has extensive data on what brands and products people are buying and when and where. This doesn’t even include the additional data it gathers through its other businesses Ant Financial, Ali Health, and its offline Hema supermarkets and ‘New Retail’ initiatives.

Alibaba’s US counterpart Amazon hasn’t shied-away from using its data to introduce its own private label brands to compete directly with the other brands selling on its platform.

“The company now has roughly 100 private label brands for sale on its huge online marketplace, of which more than five dozen have been introduced in the past year alone. But few of those are sold under the Amazon brand. Instead, they have been given a variety of anodyne, disposable names like Spotted Zebra (kids clothes), Good Brief (men’s underwear), Wag (dog food) and Rivet (home furnishings).”

New York Times, ‘How Amazon Steers Shoppers to Its Own Products’

And this move by Amazon isn’t a small pilot project. Amazon private labels have a large impact on revenue:

“The results were stunning. In just a few years, AmazonBasics had grabbed nearly a third of the online market for batteries, outselling both Energizer and Duracell on its site.”

Amazon’s home court advantage gives it a leg up versus other brands:

“Take word searches. About 70 percent of the word searches done on Amazon’s search browser are for generic goods. That means consumers are typing in “men’s underwear” or “running shoes” rather than asking, specifically, for Hanes or Nike.

For Amazon, those word searches by consumers allow it to put its private-label products in front of the consumer and make sure they appear quickly. In addition, Amazon has the emails of the consumers who performed searches on its site and can email them directly or use pop-up ads on other websites to direct those consumers back to Amazon’s marketplace.”

Alibaba has been flying under the radar with regards to any private label initiatives, and for good reason. Unlike Amazon, which started out as a retailer buying and selling products, Alibaba’s Taobao and Tmall properties are pure marketplace plays from the beginning. Because Alibaba’s main goal is helping connect merchants and buyers via its platforms, a neutral stance is essential to the platform’s success.

It’s not surprising then that Alibaba decided to launch Xinxuan as ‘Taobao Xinxuan’ rather than ‘Tmall Xinxuan’. Originally a part of Taobao, Tmall spun off to provide a more premium B2B2C marketplace for authentic brands to sell their products online. Mixing in Xinxuan’s private label products would only upset brands competing in similar product categories.

Lazada’s LazMall a stepping stone towards introducing Lazada private label in Southeast Asia?

Last week, Lazada officially launched LazMall, its Southeast Asian version of Tmall. It’s a move towards splitting Lazada (‘b-to-C’) and LazMall (‘B-to-c’) and aims to offer a premium place for big brands to sell online, away from the grey market sellers on the platform.

ecommerceIQ

From the outside, this looks like an obvious move against JD, known to offer a better customer experience according to our recent Indonesia online marketplace survey.

However, seeing Alibaba’s new concept in China with Taobao Xinxuan, it’s not far-fetched the LazMall spin-off will lead to Lazada M2C private label brands in the near future.

The Chinese ecommerce market, being about 10 years ahead of the Southeast Asian one, acts like a crystal ball for brands operating in our region. Battle-tested brands with operations in China know better to diversify their channels before putting all their eggs into a single basket.

Southeast Asian-native brands are recommended to shake off their naivety and learn from China’s history.

Monogamy in ecommerce does not lead to happiness.