Whispers began in March stating that Amazon – the online e-commerce super-store – will enter the Vietnamese market. Whilst we wait for the possible confirmation of the rumour, let us look at the development of everything e-commerce within Vietnam – where it has been, where it is now, and where it is going.
Quantity and quality
Many experts and consumers believe that traditional shopping is now dominated by the e-commerce industry largely due to the rise in popularity of online shopping platforms. Most consumers are no stranger to electronic devices and the advantages that these online platforms provide.
In addition to the more well-known shopping sites such as Lazada, Thegioididong, Sendo, Shopee, and Tiki, Vietnamese consumers also undertake retail therapy via social networks such as Facebook and Zalo. This form of shopping allows everyone to be the seller, and even though sales segment is extremely small, the size of the market is quite large and has low overhead costs.
The low costs of the ‘sales via social network’ method leads to low product prices, and is popular amongst those who regularly use online shopping platforms. On the flipside, well-known websites that have heavily invested in human resources and operating systems are facing numerous difficulties from ongoing cost burdens.
A marketing budget plays a key role in any e-commerce set-up. As noted, the budget for marketing plan in the first two years of e-commerce fluctuates around $US 2 million, and a company’s "survival" will be determined after this period of time. Brands such as Beyeu, Deca and Foodpanda all failed within two years of launching, with other companies quietly withdrawing from the market. Although it is considered to be fertile, the e-commerce market doesn’t always offer ease of business, with many brands in this field still attempting to find their footing within the sector.