KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA — A new study of over 3,300 buyers and 2,100 sellers across Malaysia by the online marketplace platform Shopee on its users, examined the impact Malaysians are making on the economy through their continued online shopping behaviors. The “Celebrating the Heart of Malaysia on Ecommerce” marketplace survey, conducted from July 19 to August 17 in 2022, found that four out of ten local sellers use Shopee as their only business channel.
The timely study highlights the importance of income generated online. 45% of Shopee’s community of sellers surveyed conceded that it enables them to support their family (providing for living essentials, education, and lifestyle), about 26% save and invest this income for rainy days ahead, and the remainder uses it to sustain a better quality of life, keep staff employed, and enhance their personal development.
More than eight in ten participating sellers attribute the long-term success of their store not to discounts offered, but to locally tailored shopping experiences: “Very straightforward buying and fulfillment process” on Shopee (34%), the recognition of Made in Malaysia products as affordable and of high quality (23%), great customer service (19%) and optimized storefront with Shopee’s marketing tools (9%).
“[The] ‘Celebrating the Heart of Malaysia on Ecommerce’ survey underscores how Malaysian sellers continue to succeed and build financial security by selling on online marketplaces like Shopee. It’s important for business owners to understand that Malaysian shoppers do have motivations beyond price for shopping online. They can create more loyalty and engagement simply by matching their offerings and content with buyer values,” said Kenneth Soh, Head of Marketing Campaigns at Shopee Malaysia.
One of the clearest findings of the study was that despite the reopening of the economy, nine in ten Malaysian shoppers still prefer online shopping. In fact, more than half of shoppers on the platform have adopted online shopping more permanently: 21% feel it is now a habit, 17% say they can easily find readily available stocks online, and 14% want to access choices that are not available offline in their specific location. 43% of shoppers value shopping around online to compare prices in this inflationary environment.
Getting items delivered faster is the strongest reason for Malaysian buyers to shop from local sellers (42% of buyers). 20% feel strongly about supporting Made in Malaysia goods to keep the economy running in Malaysia, 19% have preferences for locally tailored products and 11% believe in the quality of locally sourced and made goods.
Not all shoppers prioritize discounts and vouchers exclusively. In fact, seven in ten Malaysian buyers equate peace of mind with online shopping with Shopee. 40% express this as “the convenience and flexibility of having parcels delivered to my doorstep.” 17% feel safer as “Shopee Guarantee ensures my transaction is safe and secure because money is not released to the seller until I confirm receipt” and 10% study reviews and pictures left by other customers.
The study, which will be shared in more detail in the succeeding weeks, also dove deep into key learnings about how many Malaysian shoppers save online, the role of these savings given the current economic environment, and what drives their seller preference. Findings can be utilized by businesses to build long-term loyalty with consumers. Shopee Malaysia’s “Celebrating the Heart of Malaysia on Ecommerce” is the first in a series and will be built upon in the coming months.