How to Expand Your E-commerce Business in Southeast Asia?

Published on
June 2, 2022

Learn different ways to expand your e-commerce business in Thailand successfully. 

expand ecommerce business

The e-commerce business in Southeast Asia is growing at a rapid speed. Every year the e-commerce industry increases by 85%. This means most people are now shifting toward online shopping. As the competition gets tough, your store must offer something unique to attract customers and boost revenue.

However, expanding your business in Thailand is much more complicated than you expect. Due to the vast number of newly launching e-commerce businesses every year, multiple challenges stop start-ups from reaching their full potential. As a result, most of these e-commerce businesses close before stepping out of the initial stage.

Let’s learn different ways to expand your e-commerce business in Thailand successfully. 

8 Tips for Expanding E-commerce  Business

Expanding a business becomes more challenging when you must outsmart multiple competitors. By using these tips, you can ensure your e-commerce business keeps thriving without succumbing to complex challenges.

1. Create A Mobile App

If your e-commerce store doesn’t have a mobile app, you miss out on most sales. This is because 52% of online shopping happens via mobile phones. So, if you haven’t created a mobile app for your online store, now is an excellent time to rectify this situation.

You might think that having a mobile-optimized website is enough, but it is not. Mobile e-commerce store apps elevate customers’ shopping experience. People can store their shipping and payment information. This way, they don’t have to resend you their data, and they can complete their shopping in only two to three clicks. Due to this reason, mobile apps also lower cart abandonment rates.

Therefore, you need to invest in a high-quality mobile application for your online store to speed up the shopping and checkout process while removing unnecessary distractions for your customers.

2. Improve Response Time

Nothing can substitute fast response time and good customer service in an online business. Many e-commerce stores are only operating online and do not have any physical store to entertain customers’ issues directly. That is why it is vital to have a good customer service team to cater to all customer complaints instantly.

Moreover, in this fast-paced age, customers want quick responses in addition to a fast shopping experience. They want their queries resolved ASAP. 

So, to stay ahead in the e-commerce game, you must improve your response time. The better response time you have, the more the chances of keeping your customers satisfied and connected with your brand long-term. And loyal customers are an essential element in the growth of your e-commerce business.

3. Localize The Products and Services

Even though e-commerce is one single market, there are different divisions in this domain. Every market point in e-commerce is unique, diverse, and has particular demands. Therefore, it is a grave mistake to treat them all as one and ignore the distinctive needs of each market.

As you localize your products and services, you must have precise marketing strategies to capture the target audience’s attention. That is why, before diving into a domain, you have to do thorough research to prepare appropriately. Start by finding out which regions and areas your products are in high demand. After you have your target population, learn about their interests, likes, and what attracts them instantly.

While creating a marketing strategy, make sure to use the local language of the area. Instead of only using local language in your marketing campaigns, create a local version of your website according to the specific region. So, people automatically see the local website whenever they visit your e-commerce store. This way, people know that you belong in their inner circle, and they are more likely to trust your brand.

Social Media Marketing

4. Invest in Social Media Marketing

Social media and online forums are creating hype in Southeast Asia and the rest of the world. People follow various social media trends and trust advice and products shared on social media. In addition, it is a fantastic and easy way of reaching your target audience, increasing web traffic, and generating high revenue.

A perfect social media marketing strategy is based on hot trends. When creating your social media campaign, always search the hot topics your target audience is following at the time. Search engines suggest the trendiest topics, and when your posts fall in that category, the algorithm quickly snatches it and places it in top search results

This way, your current, and potential customers will have no choice but to take notice of your products and offerings, ultimately increasing your website’s ranking in search results.

Social media marketing also increases your brand authentication. People share your brand and post good reviews, and it helps build trust between your brand and potential customers. People trust reviews on social media and are willing to take a chance on a new service. And if it is a close friend that shares your product, your brand image improves because people quickly try out products suggested by their inner circle.

5. Think Out of the Box

While expanding your e-commerce business, you have to think big. However, when targeting the global market, your product should be especially unique and come with a reasonable price tag. So, even though you have hit all the local spots, it is time to take your e-commerce business to an international level.

Remember, you are jumping into new waters, and many locals will be selling that product. Therefore, to attract those customers and convince them to buy your products, you must show why buying from you is the better choice. First, you need to research your product’s demand in the global market. If the product demand doesn’t exist, don’t introduce your products in that country

Second, you need to use the regional language to launch the marketing campaign. You have to target customers’ pain points and show how your product is the solution. Third, your prices should be lower than what the locals are selling them. It is easier and much faster to buy from a local online store. Fourth, ensure your shipping service delivers the item on time and in pristine condition. Fifth, beware of payment frauds and use secure payment portals.

6. Befriend SEO

As an e-commerce business owner, you must already know the importance of SEO in a brand’s success. SEO should be your best friend when you plan to expand your e-commerce business. However, when you are growing your business, this importance increases tenfold. Now you have to create more engaging content to reach a bigger audience.

Additionally, you need new content to appear on SERP if you have introduced new products and services during brand expansion. You also have to change your current website and design according to the new services and products you add to your online store. While perfecting SEO, make sure to write SEO-optimized blogs and articles to attract search engine crawlers. This will help you quickly secure a spot in the SERP.

ecommerce business

7. Keep Track of Challenges

You must be mentally prepared for the upcoming challenges because it is not easy to expand an e-commerce business. It would be best if you also had an idea about the challenges, as they will be similar to what you faced while launching your e-commerce store.

However, if you plan to reach the global market, you will face multiple new challenges. While treading a new market, you can often lose track of challenges such as taxes, foreign investment environment, frauds, and brand protection. Therefore, research the market before expanding your business to an area. Note down all the challenges that can hinder your success. Then make a counter plan to overcome them quickly. When you keep strict track of all the challenges, you reduce the chances of catching off guard with new and complicated issues.

8. Create A Partnership

If you have been commanding the e-commerce business ship alone till now, this might be the right time to find a partner. Business expansion needs a lot of resources, time, and effort. This can quickly become more than you can expertly handle as the sole business owner. In this situation, partnering with an established e-commerce business is the wise step.

Having a partner to support your online store expansion brings multiple benefits. You gain access to new customers. Your partner’s reputation backs up your brand’s name, showing people you are a trustworthy online business. Finding long-term customers is difficult, but you can build trust with new customers with partnership in less time.

However, clarify your goals to your partner. This shows how much and what type of growth you are expecting. Not knowing your goals makes it difficult for a partner to help you achieve them. That is why you have to tell your partner your desired outcome and their role in helping you acquire them.

Wrapping Up

E-commerce business is rapidly increasing in Southeast Asia. This is the right time to expand your brand and reach new customers as a business owner. However, this situation can also backfire because multiple online stores are trying to succeed in the e-commerce market. That is why you need to create a plan using the tips in this article to ensure you successfully reach your brand expansion goals.

If you are ready to reach new e-commerce domains, use Zaapi to open a free online store on your mobile phone. With Zaapi, you can start selling your products in mere seconds. It is integrated with social media, easy to manage, boosts business with analytics, and provides multiple secure payment portals. So, create your online store on Zaapi today to successfully expand your business.

Photo Credits:

Ian Haynes
Proud Brooklynite, avid reader, writing enthusiast, and a digital marketing specialist.
Zaapi makes it easier to close your sales in chats.