What we can learn from Rakuten closing down in Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia.
By June Sim · 17th February, 2016
As you know, the hottest news in Ecommerce Asia recently must be Rakuten closing down their E-commerce marketplace in Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia. As online sellers in marketplaces, we may learn something from this. Share among with sellers some thoughts especially for those who are selling in these few markets. Yeap. Around 2011~2012, Ecommerce was blooming. This is the period when Malaysians started learning to buy online. It definitely was a great time period for Malaysia E-commerce market. However, some risk were found after more and more people joined the E-commerce game.
1. Price War.
Online business is a new pool of income for developing countries like us. Everyone is crazy to join any selling platform and become online sellers. Because it seems to be an easier way for newbies to try and make money? Read previous blog post about price war: You will always lose in price war During the first few years, selling in marketplace still considered profitable at that moment. More buyers trusted online buying behaviour and fewer competitors. Product pricing still could maintain in the range of good price, but when time goes by, it starts to attract a lot of people to join the game and grab the market share. The negative result is most of the sellers started to sell at very cheap price with low margin and product variety is limited or the same. It has been stuck during these few years.
2. Customer DataBase.
If we ran our business in a marketplace from few years ago, most of the new buyers and returning customers may only recognise us from the marketplace, and also, the platform is not that friendly for the seller to record the customer data. Thus, it is considered a very high-risk to sellers because they may lose all the customer list in a second. You gain only the short term money in this business.
3. Brand Identity
It is hard to avoid your customer not being able to recognise the brand identity from you and the marketplace that you chose. Because this is the only channel that you approach your customer. It is not showing the brand identity during your online business pathway, which means your efforts is easy to be ignored after the platform shuts down. We have mentioned it in the previous blog post, find out more reason there. Why you should have your own online store and not just sell on e-marketplaces
So what is next?
Let’s say that all of your online selling operations is only on that one platform and also all of your earnings come from there. What if, the marketplace suddenly shut down then what will you do next? We do not encourage any one of the seller is too rely on ONE platform. because it is a very risky decision. Maintain a good margin, collect customer data, brand identity and selling in multiple channels are the must do steps and the right way to do E-commerce nowadays. You shouldn't leave yourself behind, be smart and be responsible for your business.
What is the platform to learn the “New” Ecommerce?
No doubt. Just read the previous blog and you will find the answer. How to start your E-Commerce in Malaysia in 2016?
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