Over the past two years, the digital economy has seen rapid growth across Southeast Asia (SEA) as more consumers continue to integrate e-commerce into their everyday lives.
Key industry leaders in the Philippines, such as the Department of Trade & Industry (DTI), have been working to support e-commerce growth with new programs, such as Innovation Hubs, where experts can exchange ideas and educate MSMEs on doing business using modern technology, as well as the digitization of business registrations. With strong local support for the growth of e-commerce and new businesses, there has been a rising number of MSMEs across the country, especially outside Metro Manila. In 2021, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported that CALABARZON and Central Luzon emerged as hubs of business and industry after Metro Manila, with 27.5% of local businesses established that year coming from both regions.
With the rise of e-commerce and MSMEs, businesses need to understand the diverse needs of their consumers, who are increasingly becoming digital-first.. This will enable them to adapt to offer relevant and meaningful experiences and unlock long-term opportunities in SEA’s digital economy.
Martin Yu, Director at Shopee Philippines, shared, “As more Filipinos bring their businesses online, we continue to innovate our platform to help them better engage with this new age of digital consumers. We are committed to helping local sellers adapt to the changing habits and behaviors of consumers so that they can benefit from the transformative power of e-commerce, wherever they may be in the Philippines.”
In line with this, Shopee shares 3 key consumer trends shaping the digital economy in 2023, to help local businesses grow their online presence.
1. Increased and more savvy use of digital services
Across the region, more shoppers are transitioning to the digital space and recognizing the ease and convenience that e-commerce offers. Double day sales have become highly-anticipated by Filipinos looking to score the best deals and enjoy greater savings. During Shopee’s recently concluded 12.12 Mega Pamasko Sale, shoppers were also able to enjoy over ₱64 Million in savings on 12 December alone thanks to exciting discounts from sellers and brands. Apart from greater savings, local shoppers also flocked to the platform for entertainment. Over 115 million viewers nationwide tuned into Shopee’s livestream as they interacted to claim deals from their favorite local sellers and brands during the sale.
Filipinos are also learning how to make the most out of safe and secure cashless payment experiences with integrated mobile wallets like ShopeePay. During the 11.11 Mega Pamasko Sale last November, Shopee saw a 2.5 times uplift in shoppers who paid using ShopeePay for the first time and over 3 times more orders paid via ShopeePay compared to a regular day.
2. Growing adoption of digital services outside Metro Manila
The number of buyers and sellers outside Metro Manila has increased over time, as more Filipinos venture into e-commerce to transcend geographical borders. During the 12.12 Mega Pamasko Sale, shoppers from Davao, Cebu, Bulacan, and Rizal enjoyed great deals and emerged as cities with the most number of orders outside Metro Manila.
Recognizing the growing number sellers outside of Metro Manila, Shopee recently held various iterations of two seller-centric events in Davao, Cebu, and Pampanga – the Shopee University Roadshow, a masterclass designed to educate sellers on how to grow their businesses with e-commerce, and the Shopee Kumustahan, wherein representatives from the platform held roundtable discussions with local Shopee sellers.
3. The rise of more purposeful buyers
In this new age, shoppers are looking to support brands that align with their values and contribute to the community. Digital platforms like Shopee, connect users with businesses that help them keep the Filipino spirit of bayanihan alive. Last November, shoppers heavily supported local sellers with one of them even seeing a 7 times uplift in orders during the 11.11 Mega Pamasko Sale.
In May of 2022, Shopee partnered with Whisper and World Vision to launch the #ShareTheConfidence campaign, where Whisper pledged to match and donate sanitary products for every Whisper product sold on Shopee. With generous support from shoppers throughout the campaign, over 130,000 young women from World Vision’s partner communities across the country received sanitary products and benefited from the campaign. Most recently in December, Shopee launched the second iteration of the 12.12 Pamaskong Pambata digital donation drive, where users could purchase donation vouchers from Shopee’s partner charities to support underprivileged children.
Both campaigns are housed under Shopee Bayanihan, the platform’s umbrella CSR program, which aims to make e-commerce for everyone by helping communities benefit from the power of digital transformation wherever they are in the Philippines.
Amidst the ever-changing digital economy, platforms like Shopee are designed to propel businesses to grow in the online space, while also providing users with a customized shopping experience that will meet their needs. This 2023, there is much that shoppers, sellers, and communities can look forward to achieving together with Shopee.