Indonesia offers a huge e-commerce market to tap into, but once you have set up your online shop locally why not think regionally? The ASEAN is made up of 630 million potential customers and the e-commerce market is expected to reach $200 billion USD in value by 2025. Internet penetration is on the rise throughout the region as the middle class continued to expand and the ASEAN is undergoing an e-commerce ‘goldrush’ era of development. ASEAN consumers in markets such as Singapore are already well accustomed to purchasing items from abroad with two out of three people doing it once a year; Thais and Malaysians follow this with nearly every second person doing so (Google and Temasek Report). Competition in the ASEAN’s ecommerce sector is tight so read our top tips for getting ahead and establishing your online shop beyond Indonesia.
Use a Reliable ASEAN connected Courier Partner
Using a reliable courier partner with competitive rates and experience in delivering packages to the ASEAN is a crucial step in expanding your online shop to the region. Do your research on courier delivery partners in Indonesia and compare rates to get the best possible deal. It is also worth speaking directly to your courier delivery partner of choice find out which companies they partner with in each ASEAN market that you are thinking of entering to also check the reliability of the last mile delivery company. The two most important factors when selecting an ASEAN courier delivery partner are speed of delivery as slow delivery times can be a turn off for buyers when purchasing from abroad as well as online up to date tracking services to enable your customers to always be able to check on the status of their items.
Offer Language Options
The ASEAN region is made up of 10 countries and multiple languages with 4 official languages being used by the ASEAN organisation alone. Localisation of your online shop and product descriptions in online market places is important to be able to effectively convey the features and advantages of your online shop and its products. If you can, have your product descriptions available in the local language of the market that you are targeting. However, if you have to choose just one language to use, English is the best option as the most widely used language throughout the region. Be sure to use a professional translator where possible or get your translation checked over by a native speaker and do not use Google translate! Poor translations will turn potential buyers off from purchasing from your online store.
Use ASEAN marketplaces
Online marketplaces are great way to enter a new market in the ASEAN as opposed to going at it along with your online shop’s website. The top online marketplaces in the ASEAN are Lazada, Shopee, 11Street, Qoo10 and Lelong. Each marketplace offers slightly different conditions and advantages so do your research on what would suit your online shop best. For example, 11Street allows you to choose your own shipping fee while Shopee does not charge commissions on sales.
Offer Cash on Delivery
Cash on delivery still prevails as the most popular payment method for online transactions in the ASEAN as credit card penetration remains low throughout the region, with the exception only of Singapore. This is due to varied factors in each country but generally it is due to lack of trust in e-commerce transactions and fear of fraud.Offering Cash on Delivery is therefore a good way to build trust in your regional customer base while you build your reputation and ratings. Therefore, you need to ensure that your courier delivery partner offers COD services in the ASEAN and sometimes they may charge more for it, so you need to factor this into your bottom line.
Take Advantage of Supporting Policies
Each country in the ASEAN has different rules and policies when it comes to areas such as customs and tax so make sure that find out what customs procedures and taxes are applicable to the products that you sell through your online store. Be sure to also investigate the advantages that you can tap into; for example, in Singapore no import tax is applicable on purchases below $400 Singaporean Dollars.
The Indonesian government is keen to support online entrepreneurs and encourage expansion to the ASEAN to boost the country’s exports. In 2017, Indonesia released Presidential Regulation (Perpres) Number 74 2017 aimed at boosting the e-commerce sector through an e-commerce road map. The provisions of the regulation include providing micro-credit funding and tax incentives for e-commerce entrepreneurs, among various other measures. Further additions to this regulation are expected in the near future to specifically focus on encouraging the expansion of Indonesian e-commerce companies to sell abroad, so find out what policies your online business can take advantage of to get extra support in entering the ASEAN market.
JET express is connected throughout Indonesia and the ASEAN and is ready to support your online store to grow within and beyond the Indonesian market. Contact us and learn more about what courier delivery services we can offer you.