- Approximately, more than 70 million people have started online shopping in 6 Southeast Asian countries since the pandemic began in early 2020, according to a report from Facebook and Bain & Company.
- By the end of 2021, 70% of people within the group of 15-years-old and above in the surveyed countries; Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam, is to shop online.
- It is also indicated that the number of online shoppers in Southeast Asia (SEA) will grow by 380 million in 2026.
- With more purchases being made online during the pandemic, fintech services such as “buy now, pay later,” digital wallets, as well as cryptocurrencies have also emerged and become more famous.
As governments encouraged people to stay home during quarantine to curb the spread of COVID-19, Southeast Asia saw rapid adoption of digital services including e-commerce, food delivery, as well as online payment methods.
Among 6 surveyed countries, the report concluded Indonesia, Southeast Asia’s biggest economy, continues to nurture the highest growth rate. Its digital consumer population is, in fact, projected to increase about 15%, from 144 million in 2020 to 165 million in 2021.
The E-commerce Boom in Southeast Asia
Southeast Asia comprises 11 countries, with 6 of those leading the region economically: Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, the Philippines, and Vietnam. With a combined population of 655 million, a young demographic, and online retail sales projected to grow by 14.3% this year, Southeast Asia is indeed an exciting region for e-commerce.
The region has a prosperous landscape of local e-commerce companies powered by brands that will be recognized by a lot of people outside Southeast Asia (SEA). The largest players, including Shopee, Lazada, and Tokopedia, are online marketplaces selling a diverse range of goods, similar to the Amazon model. They take a large share of Southeast Asia’s total online retail sales, which are forecasted to reach $71 billion in 2021.
Below is a list of the top 5 online marketplaces in Southeast Asia by 2021:
Other than those listed above, Zalora has also become one of the famous e-commerce marketplaces in Asia. While the 5 other focuses on general products, Zalora focuses on fashion and beauty products the most, proven by a wide variety of famous brands it carries: from Tommy Hilfiger to Valentino and Gucci to Balenciaga.