Magazines Archives - 2012 July
Online sector's phenomenal growth to continue, says Thai e-com pioneer
The e-commerce expert pointed out that over the past 18 months, the e- commerce sector has seen phenomenal growth and despite tough conditions in the retail market, sales online remain buoyant.
Fuelling this growing marketplace is global broadband penetration, increasingly sophisticated online shopping experiences and the huge popularity of smartphones and other Web-connected devices.
Citing statistics provided by Thailand's National Statistics Office, Pawoot said that the value of the B2C e-commerce market last year was Bt84 billion (US$2.63 billion), an increase of 20% from Bt67 billion in 2010.
In Thailand, Tarad.com's revenue grew by 216% year-on-year since adopting the key business principles of its parent company, Rakuten of Japan, reputedly the world's third-largest e- commerce company which acquired a majority stake in Tarad.com in 2009.
"This year, the e-commerce market in Thailand will be challenging, with new players expected to enter the market with an eye to expand into the region with the launch of the ASEAN Economic Community in 2015 We need to make ourselves strong enough to compete with rivals and increase our customer experience," the managing director stated.
Tarad.com's focus is on offering guarantees; more payment channels and instalment options; more merchants; and competitive prices.
Pawoot pointed out that a recent study by Shop.org, comScore and Social Shopping Labs revealed that 47% of consumers check their mobiles for product reviews while shopping in brick-andmortar stores.
"The boundaries between the online and offline worlds continue to blur and international retail borders have become less defined," he said, suggesting four key trends for international marketers to focus on:
While only 1% of total sales currently come from the mobile channel, Pawoot sees significant growth potential for the channel. He revealed that Tarad. com plans to launch an app for the iOS smartphone platform, following existing apps for the Android and BlackBerry platforms.
He said: "Last year, Rakuten barely scraped the surface of what is possible with online retailing. We are on the cusp of creating an experience-rich, 24-hour international shopping community.
"In the year ahead, innovative mobile devices, worldwide mobile and broadband penetration, and innovative social shopping services will open up global markets, providing huge growth opportunities for merchants large and small, and unparalleled consumer choice.
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