The 10 E-Commerce Sites in Thailand that Brands Need to be Selling on Now
Besides the big players like Lazada and Tarad, ever wonder who the top 10 e-commerce sites in Thailand were?
We pulled the data and have come up with a list. The sites have to be located and operating from Thailand and ranking is based on estimated desktop visits in January 2015 measured by SimilarWeb. Not included are service sites (ex. ticket and hotel reservations), communities, classifieds, forums, and global e-commerce platforms such as Amazon or Ebay.
It’s not a perfect methodology for measuring the success of an e-commerce venture but it does provide those who work in retail a snapshot of where they need to get their products out ASAP to win the Thai e-commerce market.
The Ranking (by page visits in Jan 2015):
- Lazada (20,100,100)
- WeloveShopping (6,200,000)
- Tarad (3,900,000)
- Zalora (2,300,000)
- Ensogo (1,600,000)
- Cdiscount (1,200,000)
- J.I.B. (1,200,00)
- Central.co.th (790,000)
- iTrueMart (780,000)
- Munkong Gadget (680,000)
The usual suspects and a few surprises, so what’s going on?
Money talks in a nascent market: players backed by massive funding & resources
- Lazada and Zalora entered the Thailand market via German start-up accelerator, Rocket Internet
- Weloveshopping brings the resources of Thailand’s True Corp, a regional leader in telecommunications
- Tarad is owned by Rakuten, who had nearly $5 billion (USD) in revenue in 2014
- Cdiscount is owned by Cnova, a global e-commerce leader with 13.6 million active users worldwide
- Central.co.th is a part of Central Group, owned by the richest family in Thailand
- Ensogo was acquired by LivingSocial and most recently owned by iBuy
So does first mover advantage
Lazada– the first major Amazon equivalent in the region. Ensogo– the first Groupon in the region. Tarad– Thailand’s oldest e-commerce site. Can you spot the trend?
Many players in the top ten come without surprise. While Thai consumers enjoy trying new products, they remain extremely loyal to the brands that got there first; only three out of ten Thais are willing to switch brands completely. First comers include online marketplace Weloveshopping, now in its ninth year of business in Thailand and Tarad whose brand power stems over 13 years of operating experience.
‘The Everything Store’ trend is especially hot in Thailand
- Seven out of the top ten online retailers have diversified online markets, selling everything from beauty products to household goods, rather than deep verticals in one category
- The only exceptions are Zalora (fashion), J.I.B. (electronics), and Munkong Gadget (headphones)
- This is related to the growing consolidation for B2C companies in Thailand that lead to more M&A deals
But most popular doesn’t mean the most money
When ruminating on these finding it is important to remember that the data is based on the amount of people who visited these sites, not revenue or number of orders (as this is very sensitive data and not readily available to the public).
“Winning the internet’s eyeballs comes down to those with the deepest pockets,”said Sheji Ho, Group CMO of aCommerce, “Because they are able to buy the most online and offline media like billboards, TV commercials and Google AdWords, as well as hire the best marketing talent.”
This means the numbers do not necessarily speak for the conversion rate of visitors, which can vary greatly depending on poor on-site UX, product selection, and pricing. In other words, it’s unfair to judge a sites performance based on traffic alone. A better way would be to look at other metrics such as total sales, conversion rates, and customer lifetime value on top of traffic analytics to better gauge overall performance.
Beyond sales value: These sites are critical marketing channels
In the evolving age of marketing and advertising brands would do well to gain a presence on these increasingly popular platforms. Look at Alibaba’s Tmall for example. Luxury brand Burberry recently opened up their flagship store on Tmall knowing their sales wouldn’t be optimal because most savvy Chinese consumers buy their luxury products in Europe or US where it’s much cheaper. They weren’t making a sales play.
This was a branding strategy due to the massive amount of traffic that Tmall secures. A quick glance at their flagship store will make this clear as their Tmall site looks less like an online shop and more like one of their offline luxury stores.
“While time consuming to do manually, all marketing managers need to prioritize listing products and creating shops on the top e-commerce sites in Thailand,” said Sheji Ho, “In order to win big in e-commerce in Southeast Asia, you need to be where the eyeballs are.”
aCommerce is Southeast Asia’s leading e-commerce solutions provider delivering customized e-commerce solutions for global brands such as L’Oreal, HP, LINE, and Groupon among others, and is on a mission to break the logistics bottleneck of Southeast Asia. Founded in June 2013, aCommerce has offices and distribution centers in Indonesia, Thailand, Philippines and Singapore. The company provides end-to-end e-commerce solutions to bring brands into online retail including platform design and development, order fulfilment and warehousing, delivery and logistics, customer service call centers, content production, performance marketing, and channel management. aCommerce is one of Southeast Asia’s fastest growing tech companies and recently closed one of the region’s largest Series A rounds to date.