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According to GfK Market Intelligence for Southeast Asia’s six key markets, online sales for technical consumer goods (TCG) continued to surge across all markets in the first quarter of 2021. GfK findings showed a 6 percent rise in sales value contributions, translating to 43 percent growth or USD 594 million increased sales in Q1 2021 compared to Q1 2020 in Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.
“With a booming population of online shoppers, Southeast Asia undoubtedly possesses a strong e-commerce market, having been growing progressively over the last two years,” said Alexander Dehmel, Market Insights Lead, GfK Asia. “The pandemic was, and still is a key trigger that has forced many traditional shoppers to now shop online, creating an even more robust online marketplace.”
Indonesia is one of the markets that has been demonstrating the steadiest hike in e-commerce contributions. Its online sales have been contributing an increasing share of the overall TCG market value, rising consecutively for three years straight—from 14 percent in 2019, 19 percent in 2020 and subsequently to 23 percent in the latest period. Singapore (22%) and Thailand (22%) are the two other markets where online sales contribution have exceeded 20 percent of overall TCG market in Q1 2021.
Based on GfK Market Intelligence, four key online buying trends have surfaced during this tracking period:
GfK embarked on its expansion drive to enhance its online sales reporting capabilities for the Southeast Asia region. Since beginning of 2021, Malaysia and Philippines have been added to its pre-existing coverage of Singapore, Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia to complete its internet sales expansion covering the six key markets in the region. In addition, GfK has increased the number of online product categories tracked, and enhanced the granularity of its online reporting by further breaking down sales contribution from the different online channels—pure player/marketplaces versus click and mortar.
Overall 80 country-category combinations have been improved or launched in 2021, accounting for the USD 280 million in increased sales value contribution by these newly tracked online categories in the first quarter of the year. The expansion drive also continues outside of Southeast Asia, to Hong Kong, where online sales tracking will commence in the last quarter of 2021. Meanwhile, further enhancements continue to be set-up across the region for 2022.
“As the e-commerce market in Southeast Asia is set to grow, Internet sales will undeniably be a force to be reckoned with during these wary and uncertain times, bringing along numerous benefits in its path,” said Dehmel. “The “at-home” experiences have kept the online marketplace going and provided a cushion against economic shocks created by the pandemic in the past months. Going forward, these “at-home” experiences will continue to shape the online marketplace and economic drivers that are vital for success even in the post pandemic world, in areas of convenience, performance, as well as health and hygiene.”
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