Shopee to empower traditional, e-commerce businesses for 12.12 sale

by LYDIA NATHAN / source: Shopee Malaysia

LINKING e-commerce and brick-and-mortar businesses will be the way forward for the retail industry as each comes with its own benefits, yet stronger when the two are combined.

Shopee Malaysia head of seller management Zed Li said the company is currently motivated to utilise the module which is expected to reinvigorate the country’s economy amid the challenges that consumers are facing at the moment.

He said the company also aims to create a hybrid model using three different ways, including selling via traditional model online.

“Another way is through special vouchers and promotions. Shopee has been offering deals and tickets for customers who can purchase it on the platform, and then use or redeem it at an actual store.

“And thirdly, brick-and-mortar stores that utilise ShopeePay as a mode of transaction,” he told the media during the 12.12 Birthday Sale briefing yesterday.

To this end, the platform recently onboarded more than 1,000 brick-and-mortar businesses to strengthen the synergy between online and offline purchasing.

Li said malls, cinemas, food and beverage (F&B) outlets, petrol stations, beauty salons, and various other parties have also joined the platform, which is expected to add value to the ecosystem.

“In addition to tickets and vouchers, offline retailers are able to draw higher footfall to their stores with the support of daily cashback of up to RM8 when users transact with ShopeePay mobile wallet,” he said.

He added that the emphasis on contactless payment has also encouraged Malaysians to shop and spend safely amid the third wave of Covid-19.

“Remaining resilient on our own at a time of crisis is not sustainable in the long run. All industries need to break the boundaries and join forces to protect the future of Malaysia’s economy and wellbeing of its people,” Li said.

He said Shopee will continue to support the business community with seller incentives and e-commerce education, such as the recently launched 12.12 Free E-commerce Workshops on digital literacy, ways to boost sales and exposure during campaigns.

United Overseas Bank (M) Bhd senior economist Julia Goh said it is the right way to move forward as the country has projected losses of RM67 billion this year due to the restrictions and lockdown regulations implemented by the government.

“So many businesses have either completely shut down or temporarily closed because of tight demand and liquidity. It is understood that the F&B sector alone cut 35% of its workforce during the Movement Control Order,” she said.

Goh said private consumption will be the key growth driver in 2021, accounting for up to 60% of GDP.

“Therefore, offline retail and services sectors must find ways to thrive in a post-pandemic environment whereby higher unemployment levels may spiral into weaker purchasing power,” she said.

She said businesses should integrate offline and online strategies to cope with the changes brought about by the new norm and tap the growing potential of the digital economy.

“E-commerce contribution to GDP grew from RM89 billion in 2015 to RM127 billion or 8.4% of GDP in 2019. While the contribution of online retail sales to overall sales is still small, it has room for strong growth,” Goh said.

Meanwhile, Shopee also announced new and upcoming partnerships with malls like Lot 10 in Kuala Lumpur (KL), Gurney Paragon in Penang and The Spring in Sarawak for its 12.12 Birthday Sale this year.

Li said the platform will support the continuity of traditional businesses in conjunction with its fifth birthday celebration this year.

“The year 2020 has opened our eyes and shown us the importance and capability of technology to truly enable positive change.

“We continue to be committed in powering the growth of e-commerce in 2021 and beyond by bringing the human touch to online shopping, personalising and creating a seamless customer journey through integrated payments and logistics, engagement features and innovative experiences that value-add the overall Shopee journey,” he said.

Li said among the special offerings will include RM1 daily deals, free shipping with a minimum spend of RM12 and the 12.12 Birthday Bash on Dec 11, 2020.

“It will be broadcast on Shopee Live, Astro Ria, Astro Gempak and YouTube. The concert boasts a star-studded line-up such as Sheila Majid, Faizal Tahir, Ruffedge, Misha Omar, Khai Bahar and Dolla,” he said.

The platform has also introduced a new live show Shopee Kotak Duit that rewards users and is hosted on Shopee Live every Monday to Thursday.