ASEAN e-commerce customers “less than satisfied” with their transactions

ASEAN e-commerce customers "less than satisfied" with their transactions
Photo by Ketut Subiyanto from Pexels

A study suggests that ASEAN e-commerce customers are “less than satisfied” with their transactions during a high demand in the industry.

The findings of a new Blackbox Research report showed that over one-third of ASEAN e-commerce shoppers are not completely satisfied with their online transactions during a time of high demand in the industry due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The study, held in partnership with consumer intelligence platform Toluna, reveals that those who are disappointed with digital purchasing are frustrated mostly with the cost of delivery and services, product quality, and fake online reviews.

The researchers asked 4780 consumers in six ASEAN territories. Results also showed that age groups showing the biggest increases in spending were Gen X (60 percent) and Millennials (59 per cent).

Meanwhile, the total online spending for the average purchaser in the region has increased by 32 percent. With this, consumers become critical of the expansion in the industry.

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“Southeast Asia’s retail landscape has undergone a seismic shift since Covid-19 hit the region,” said Blackbox Research international commercial director Yashan Cama. “While it has been clear for some time that consumers are more digitally adept, it is also clear that older consumers have grown in comfort with digital tools and services. That generational gap really has shrunk in recent months

“However, as more shoppers move online, their expectations of the online retail experience have evolved, and this is where e-commerce players must step up their game.”

Cama pointed out that e-commerce players may experience challenges if they do not pay attention to consumer satisfaction and raise their standards at a time where more than 90 percent of customers are happy working from home and prefer local brands.

“With consumers now better educated and informed, and 5G technology on the verge of transforming platform capabilities, current market leaders may fall by the wayside if they don’t shift to a more seamless experience,” he said.

Online shopping in Southeast Asia

Online shopping in Southeast Asia will continue to grow, even after the coronavirus pandemic ends, according to analysts.

The rise of online shopping in Southeast Asia is attributed to constant buying of groceries and other essential items, based on the research of consultancy Bain & Company and Facebook.

A new report from the two firms revealed that the coronavirus outbreak gave a boost to e-commerce and other digital trends across the region. Over 7 million people worldwide were infected by Covid-19.

“Some of these trends are here to stay,” Praneeth Yendamuri, a partner with Bain & Company based in Singapore.

“One of the trends we identified was essential online shopping, and that’s here to stay,” he said during an interview on CNBC’s “Street Signs” on Tuesday.

Yendamuri pointed out that online groceries is a huge category that is relatively under-penetrated because of logistics and other issues.

However, data showed that the sector increased by almost three times during the outbreak in Southeast Asia. One in three respondents said they planned to still purchase their groceries over the internet in the future, the report says.

Total grocery spending in Southeast Asia reached around $350 billion. Industry experts emphasize that online grocery accounts for a fraction of that overall value. The sector is gaining traction.

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