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eCommerce

Three Tips Retailers Can Use To Reach Southeast Asian Consumers

With a whopping population of 600 million people, Southeast Asia has been a hotbed for the e-commerce industry. This Asian region consists of young consumers with demands that local retailers cannot satisfy, which tempts foreign e-commerce companies to take risks and enter its market. But what are some tips foreign retailers can use to introduce their brand in this fast-growing Asian market? 

Mobile is king 

When entering a certain market, it is a requirement to know who your audience is, and by entering this region, you should already know that a large number of its population are young, demanding, and spend most of their time using their mobile phones. 

This is what makes having a website that would provide an easy and seamless mobile shopping experience important. And as we all know, customer satisfaction is what keeps a business alive and growing. 

Understanding logistics

In doing business with online shoppers in Southeast Asia, foreign brands should also find a solution to shorten the time of delivering and transporting goods from their hub to their customers’ doors. The region is known for having heavy traffic, poor motorways, and poorly planned urban development projects which all contribute to a longer duration of delivering customer orders. 

It has been proven that factors such as cost, quality, and delivery time helps a business stand out from its competitors. This is why excellent planning when it comes to logistics should be made to ensure consumers that they will get what they paid for as soon as possible. 

Provide flexible payment options

An easy payment process plays a crucial role in the overall customer experience. This means that in completing a purchase, your business must offer a variety of payment options for your consumers to choose from, especially Southeast Asian consumers. This is because these consumers have different ways to pay for something and it primarily depends on what is the most convenient for them. Some use cash thru cash-on-delivery options, some pay using credit and as the region has already embraced FinTech (Financial Technology), a lot of consumers tend to pay using their e-wallets. 

To successfully enter the Southeast Asian market, one must know what works for a business and what doesn’t. These tips are just “tips” that can make it easier for you to achieve your goals, and don’t guarantee to meet expectations. But these tips together with a lot of patience, dedication, and hard work, can make the chances greater to find the path to success.

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Cross-border

Top Five Countries For Doing Business in Southeast Asia

If you are a business trying to look for places where you can have your business achieve growth and generate lots and lots of profit, then you might want to consider entering the Southeast Asian market. It became an attractive market to be in after it has witnessed economic growth for the past years and still has a lot of untapped market opportunities waiting to be grabbed. But what are some countries that do well when it comes to business? 

Here are the top five countries you may want to do business with.

Singapore

Who would wanna miss the opportunities behind the “Lion City”? The abundance of skilled workforce and resources, a robust economy, and an attractive tax system, plus a simple and straightforward procedure when starting a business that is fast and easy make it a pot of gold for people looking to start a business within the country. This makes it easy to be a “Zai” in the industry you’ve chosen in no time.

Hong Kong

Another opportunity-packed country at the heart of Asia, Hong Kong can also be a great country to start your entrepreneurial endeavors. As the country offers a plethora of advantages such as an easy incorporation process, a business-friendly environment, and a place where people can speak and understand the English language. This makes it easier to communicate with your target audience and deliver the message your brand is trying to convey.

Malaysia

With a pro-business government and a market-oriented economy, there’s no doubt that Malaysia is a good country to do business with. The country also provides a robust and conducive business environment that promotes and encourages growth, profitability, and healthy competition within businesses of all industries. This makes doing business in Malaysia a profitable country to do business with, as it can get you profits as high as the Petronas Tower.

Taiwan

It is indeed easy to do business in Taiwan, in fact, it ranked 15th out of hundred and ninety economies in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business Survey in 2020. It can also serve as a strategic location whenever you have more plans on expanding as it is near some of the world’s biggest economies such as China. And unlike other countries, Taiwan allows foreigners to have full ownership of their companies, without any minimum paid-up capital requirements.

Thailand

Although language barriers can be a problem when doing business in Thailand, the country still offers one of the most promising workforces in the world. This just means that any foreign business can benefit from a large pool of skilled workers to work for their companies. With steady growth, strong exports, and a vibrant economy, there’s no doubt that Thailand can lead your business to success.

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Research

Four of the Greatest Myths About Going DTC

As the DTC model continues to rise, many people are still not convinced that this business model can help them generate more profit. Maybe they’ve got personal reasons why, or maybe they’ve heard of reasons that made them decide not to enter the world of direct-to-consumer. Maybe you have heard of a few, and while some are true, some are just myths and are made to take away the confidence of people who wanted to try going DTC, and here are some to name a few.

Myth: DTC is too complicated

Fact: Starting a DTC business is now easier

Starting your own DTC business is easier than you might think. The hardest part of starting one is to know your brand. Plans on what to sell, where to sell them, and to whom these products should be sold were the hardest part. But after you get through that, you just need to choose and set different platforms so that you can have good communication with your potential customers.

Myth: DTC is time-consuming

Fact: Setting up a DTC business can be completed in as early as 4 weeks

The tallest buildings haven’t been constructed in just a few days, even the most fruitful crops didn’t grow in just the blink of an eye. Everything takes time, and so is establishing your own DTC business. But the process won’t take you longer than an eternity. Starting a DTC business won’t take you long, it’s careful planning and careful concept that needs time. After that, the next steps will just make you feel like time is just passing by.

Myth: DTC will not last

Fact: It is not just some kind of trend, because it is here to stay

People often think of the DTC business model as just some sort of trend that will fade away and be forgotten as time goes by. But it won’t. DTC brands have been predicted to continue rising this year, and probably in the succeeding years. Well, it’s of no surprise that this kind of business model will achieve success since it benefits both the retailer and the consumer.

Myth: DTC won’t be competitive in the market

Fact: Of course, it can

Sure small DTC businesses can’t compete with giants such as Amazon and Alibaba, but let’s not underestimate what a great product and an effective marketing strategy can do. It can’t move mountains, but it can move people. Because what a DTC should focus on is quality and not quantity. So making sure that you have a product that would capture the people’s interest and fulfill their needs at the same time, then success is as good as found.

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Market Updates

What Sells In China? 

When selling in China or anywhere else in the world, knowing what to sell and identifying products that have a market you can sell to is of high importance. And if you’re planning to enter this huge market behind the great wall, you have to at least take note of what they purchase so you can have an idea of what you should be selling.

Here are five products that can easily sell in China:

1. Clothing 
Years ago, Chinese consumers bought their clothes in local shops or some fake markets just around the corner. But today, big clothing brands have established a local presence inside the country. Names like H&M, Zara, Gucci, and more have been popular among local consumers as they are leaning toward the quality these big brands can offer. 

2. Shoes
Well, for some similar reasons, international shoe brands have also become popular in the country. And although wearing high heels and leather shoes are still popular among Chinese consumers, the younger generation has been pushing the trend of wearing sneakers and sports shoes. We all know how the younger generation can drive sales of a certain product, right? 

3. Jewelry
We all know Chinese consumers’ obsession with jewelry, especially women. This demand for jewelry has made China one of the fastest-growing sectors when it comes to luxury goods. Gold, diamonds, and other unique jewelry made from aluminum, wood, and plastic are some that gain the interest of young consumers.

4. Beauty and Cosmetics
This category has always been the most popular among Chinese shoppers, and the demand has made the country the second-largest cosmetics market in the world. But why was it so big in China? It is because both women and men are equally interested in cosmetics and skin care as they are fond of taking care of their looks and their skin.

5. Healthy Products
People in China are becoming more aware of how important it is to have a healthy diet and a good lifestyle. And because of that, they started eating healthy foods like vegetables and fruits while some have switched to plant-based meat which is supported by the government as the country is facing obesity problems, especially among the younger generation. 

These are just some of the many products that sell in China, and if you’re planning to penetrate the market, you should take these products into consideration especially if your business is in the stage of formulating what product to sell. 

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Beauty

The Key Opportunities for DTC brands in the Live Streaming Commerce

DTC, also known as D2C, is short for Direct-To-Consumer eCommerce, where merchants can sell their products online directly to consumers. The DTC business model first emerged in the 2010s but has continued to gain popularity among today’s consumers who appreciate the advantages of buying items directly from brands, specifically, the totality of experience they receive from the authentic connection built between them and the brands.

With the influx of competition, fueled by the pandemic where a lot of people were forced to be entrepreneurs, there have been really high standards placed by the consumers on the brands they choose to give attention to, and there lies the need for brands to offer the most authentic, one-of-a-kind experience designed to produce customer-delight.

And this is where the DTC model shines brightest- a space where there are no middlemen or retail stores that go between the relationship of the brand itself and its consumers, just exactly how consumers today want it.

Why is Live Streaming Commerce a Huge Opportunity for DTC Brands? 

This business model carries the DTC trifecta – social media, influencers, and online shopping making it the most logical next step for DTCs. It also fills the gap that seems to be the missing piece people crave from retail shopping: the human connection it offers. 

With live-streaming commerce, the buyers can shop online via the platform of their choice, with the influencers they support, straight from the brands they love. It’s been the rave in China, the biggest e-commerce marketplace including live streaming commerce, where netizens enjoy live online shopping, where their favorite influencers-turned-celebrities answer all their inquiries about the items while entertaining them both at the same time.

What does Live Streaming Commerce Look Like Today?

China, the e-commerce marketplace that international brands continue to tap but it’s so vast the marketplace only keeps on getting bigger, earns an estimated $6 billion annually from live streaming eCommerce alone according to Forbes. 

The rest of the world, on the other hand, particularly the West, has slowly but surely been penetrating the live-streaming market. They may be a couple of years behind their eastern counterpart but they are getting there. International brands like Tommy Hilfiger for example recently extended their live-streaming efforts in the US and Europe where 1,300 hoodies were sold in 2 minutes. The biggest western eCommerce companies such as Amazon, and Google making plans to make YouTube an integrated e-commerce destination, Walmart, to name a few has been making huge investments gearing toward the relatively new business model. 

A Call for Early-Adapters 

The best time to embark on the live-streaming eCommerce ship was yesterday but today would be a pretty solid business move too. As DTC brands in general pay very close attention to their relationships with their consumers, the enhanced engagement that live streaming strengthens this relationship even further. It’s an effective stage to showcase and sell your products in real-time, with the help of real-time feedback from your Key Opinion Leaders (KOLs) and returning customers present and watching the live stream.