In our recent study, SEA State of eCommerce 2017, although Filipino consumers had the lowest conversion rate across SEA, the Philippines had the second highest average spending per-online order. In 2017, the country’s eCommerce amassed 34 million users and garnered a total revenue of US$1.491 billion by 2018 which is projected to experience an annual growth rate of 15.1%.

According to Google and Temasek, by 2025 the Philippine eCommerce is poised to be worth US$19 Billion, outsizing Malaysia and Singapore. As the Philippines continues to harness its e-commerce potential, iPrice Group mapped out the country’s top e-commerce to evaluate its significance to its retail industry. Our analysis showed that while 82 percent of the top 50 e-commerce are local players; international players dominate as Lazada and Shopee increases in its market reach.

Lazada continues to dominate e-commerce activity in the Philippines

In Q4 2017, Lazada’s lead in Philippine e-commerce even furthers as it increased by 25 percent from 62.5 million to 82.9 million; 10 times bigger than Shopee. Lazada is the most followed e-commerce platform on Facebook and Twitter as it penetrates at least 3 times more the size of its competitors. Lazada also outperformed Sunnies Studio as the second most followed on Instagram by Q4 2017, while Apartment 8 Clothing, another local fashion brand maintains its top position.

Lazada doubled down its Q4 2017 online reach through its major campaign, “The Online Revolution” as it generated a total of $250 million GMV in their month long sale. With Lazada’s domination in SEA aggregate market, Alibaba Group recently upped its stake in Lazada by injecting an additional 2 billion investment and appointing Alibaba founder Lucy Peng as its new Lazada’s Chief Executive Officer.

Shopee emerged as Lazada’s strongest competitor

Despite the streak lead of Lazada in the Philippines, SEA Ltd.’s Shopee emerged as its strongest competitor overtaking Zalora in second place by Q4 2017 with 32 percent more traffic. Shopee has also improved its social media reach, from 4th place its Facebook page leaped to 2nd while its Instagram page became the 3rd most followed. In terms of app rankings, Shopee secured the top spot in iOS App Store Rank for Q3 and Q4 but is ranked second after Lazada in Google Play.

Also read: Alibaba installs new Lazada CEO after US$2 billion investment

It come as no surprise as Shopee has claimed to be a mobile first platform, making its interface ideal for SEA consumers. Unlike the Western markets, the SEA is uniquely a mobile-first region where its mobile commerce drives the majority of the e-commerce activity. Based on our SEA State of eCommerce 2017 study, there is a rising tail of mobile traffic across the region. In the Philippines specifically, the market experienced a 76 percent share of traffic from mobile devices.

Lazada and Shopee help local MSMEs to setup online stores

Though the key players in the Philippines’ e-commerce scene are international players, Lazada and Shopee continuously work with the government and private sector to develop the country’s e-commerce industry and help local MSMEs build their online presence.

While Shopee’s focus is to partner with established brands, (as it transitioned from C2C to B2C model), it is as keen in tapping local entrepreneurs to expand its product listings. Since Shopee ‘s inception, it set up its own university which aims to help local entrepreneurs manoeuvre in the competitive mobile-centric environment.

Lazada on the other hand, has partnered with private to government institutions which helps ease the process for MSME’s migration to digital space. This year, Lazada’s tie up with Department of Trade and Industry has pilot e-commerce adaption trainings for 50 MSME’s, 15 of which has successfully on board in Lazada’s marketplace. Last February, government officials from Department of Finance received training from Alibaba Group under its Alibaba Business School to develop the financial technology in the country.

E-commerce platform set to revive homegrown fashion brands

While the fashion segment in Philippine e-commerce experiences growth in 2018 (surpassing furniture and appliances, food and personal care segments), homegrown brands are increasing its online visibility and market reach. Based on Philippines’ top 50 e-commerce rankings, 78 percent are local players showing Filipino consumers are beginning to patronize homegrown fashion brands and discover locally made products.

Homegrown fashion brands like Sunnies Studios, Gnarly, Seek the Uniq, Apartment 8 Clothing and CESA are giving the local fashion scene more visibility in the marketplace. AVA gives a venue for local fashion brands from established names to up-and-coming to reach a wider market through e-shop. To date, Sunnies Studio, Seek the Uniq, and CESA have expanded their brands to market their products in the international market. As PHL government campaigns for eCommerce to MSME’s, homegrown brands are expected to be more visible in the digital space.

Methodology

The Map of E-Commerce ranks Philippines’ top 50 e-commerce players based on their average quarterly traffic, mobile application ranking and social media following. The data set was collated in January 2018:

  1. Quarterly Traffic Data was taken from Similar Web;
  2. Mobile App Ranking Data was taken from App Annie;
  3. Social Media Following Data was taken from their respective Facebook, Twitter and Instagram handles.

About iPrice Group

iPrice Group is operating as a one-stop shop e-commerce aggregator across 7 markets in Southeast and East Asia with key feature in price comparison. It’s meta-search feature collates e-commerce products: home and living, cosmetics, grooming, fashion and electronics while its key feature in price comparison specifically caters to electronics.

For the latest start-up, business and technology insights please visit the iPrice Insights page: https://iprice.ph/trends/insights/

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