South East Asia is home to over 200 million digital consumers, who last year spent $50bn online. Now Western tech and e-commerce websites such as Amazon and Google are looking to battle Chinese companies for dominance in the region. Along with Facebook, these internet giants set up shop in Singapore earlier this year, looking to take advantage of this rapidly growing market. As tech continues to advance quickly, here’s how Western tech companies could impact the Asian e-commerce market.
Boost to Competition
Through launching its Prime Now service in Singapore, Amazon is bringing a new level of competition to South East Asia. Progress in the region had been slow compared to the rest of the world in recent years, with fragmented service and slow delivery time.
Now Amazon is offering local residents a two-hour delivery service. This means that locale Commerce companies such as Alibaba will have to improve their standards if they wish to stay competitive. Local companies will only be a valuable service to customers if they can either undercut competitors in price or speed of service.
A Shift to Customer Obsession
Tech companies in Asia have offered cheap products for many years, but the emergence of Western online services will lead to a change in strategy. Tech giants such as Facebook put the user at the heart of their campaigns, while Amazon has been described as “customer-obsessed”.
This new approach makes Amazon appealing to both customers and retailers. AMZShark asserts the importance of data when it comes to selling Amazon products. Services like this can make it easier for commercial companies to rank highly on Amazon and sell more products than they can on traditional Asian e-commerce websites.
Google also follows a customer obsession approach, by creating a friendly and contactable brand. This will likely appeal to many South East Asian consumers. Google’s new Singapore based office has over a thousand employees, ready to bring their tech products and services to the growing Asian market. If local companies fail to match these high expectations, they may see their profit begin to drop.
With a sudden boom in South East Asian online consumers, it was inevitable that the world’s largest online companies would make a move to the region. This is great news for consumers, who will see an improvement in customer service as well as faster product delivery time. It should also mean that local companies overcome their complacency and are motivated to improve their services to keep up with increased competition.