Despite its limited landmass and its considerably small population as compared to its neighbouring countries, Singapore possesses one of the most attractive and strongest e-commerce markets in Asia.
This can be attributed mainly to its advanced infrastructure, highly evolving technological innovations, business-friendly environment, as well as robust linguistic and cultural links to many Asian markets, among many other factors.
Today, the e-commerce business is a fast-growing industry that allows would-be company owners and emerging SMEs to launch their product and/or services offerings on the Internet with relative ease.
Here are 5 Great Reasons Why Singapore is the Prime Location for Starting Up an e-commerce Business
Increase in Digital Usage
According to the research survey reflected on the Savvy Singapore: Decoding a Digital Nation, Singapore ranked first on the global Network Readiness Index (NRI). As of November 2017, almost 8.65 million of population has mobile subscriptions while broadband subscriptions have already hit 13 million.
Needless to say, digital technology is an integral part of daily life for many Singaporeans. Though visiting physical stores is still part of their retail therapy process, online purchases is also on the rise.
More and more people use their smartphones or computers not just for accessing the internet, but also for making online purchases and for getting product information and pricing comparison.
The rise of tech adoption among Singapore residents will definitely lead to the growth of online retail commerce – something that start-ups, retail companies, and SMEs should take advantage of.
Availability of Different Payment Gateways
The overall increase in e-commerce transactions among Singaporean consumers can also be attributed to the availability of various payment methods, with credit cards being the most preferred way to do it.
Even the government promotes the use of cashless payments among online consumers to build the credibility of the e-commerce sector. Bank transfers, direct debits, PayPal, and eNETS are also some of the other options that ensure comfort and convenience for online shoppers.
There are two common options for small and new businesses with limited resources: 1) set up an account with Asian payment gateways that guarantees currency tracking and local support; 2) partner up with third-party processors that offer competitive rates.
Consolidation of Electronic Wallets
The Singapore Quick Response Code initiative by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has resulted to a consortium among various payment service providers including MasterCard and Diners Club, among many others.
This is to promote interoperability, through a common Singapore Quick Response Code (SG QR), between 50,000 merchants and 2 million consumers in the state-island.
If start-ups, SMEs, and emerging business ventures will prioritise this kind of integration of electronic payment methods in smartphones and mobile devices, it would be easier to attract potential customers and encourage them to be loyal consumers of their product and/or service offering.
Social Media Integration
Traditional marketing channels still play a significant role in how products and services are made known to target customers.
But the prevalence of social media use among online users is undeniable – even considering the opinions, suggestions, and promotions of social media influences from all walks of life as a virtual guide for accessing specific types of products and/or services available in the internet.
It would only seem logical to adopt an online marketing strategy where would-be merchants or newly-formed businesses will form a digital partnership with social media platforms.
This is not just a great way to communicate with potential shoppers or to get valuable insights to their varying needs and expectations but it will also greatly enhance the ‘shareability’ factor of the product and/or service which can boost sales revenue not just on its intended audience but even on a wider market base.
Strategic Geographical Location
Singapore is strategically located in the heart of South Asia – at the crossroads of East-West logistics and trade, right in the middle of many shipping routes, and within the seven-hour flight radius to the emerging markets of all of Asia.
It also makes a strong case for being the best entry point for all types of goods, services, investments, capital, and labour among the 10 nations that form the Association of Southeast Asian Nations Economic Community (AEC).
Because of the unparalleled connectivity that Singapore offers to global companies and international manufacturers that wish to connect with local entrepreneurs and potential e-retailers to set up their operations here to bring in their products and services offerings to their targeted base market.
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