In the last quarter of 2018, we saw fierce competition in the e-commerce arena. E-commerce business of all sizes undertook various initiatives to promote online sales periods such as the Singles’ Day Sale, 12.12 Sales, Black Friday, and various year-end sales. This makes the final quarter the most active period for e-commerce and solidifies this period as the most important quarter of the year for most online businesses in Southeast Asia and Malaysia.
To find out who were the most successful e-commerce platforms in this period, we analyzed online traffic, mobile app rankings, social media followers and number of employees for the months of October, November and December 2018. Here are the most interesting findings from our study.
The Most Visited E-Commerce Platform in Southeast Asia for Q4 2018 Companies with the highest average monthly visits on desktop and mobile web in Southeast Asia were Lazada (183.4 million visits), Tokopedia (153.6 million visits) and Shopee (147.6 million visits).
The average monthly visit reached by Tokopedia is impressive compared to the average monthly visits from Lazada and Shopee. Compared with Lazada and Shopee, the total average online traffic was garnered from multiple countries in Southeast Asia, while Tokopedia is only available in Indonesia.
The Most Visited E-Commerce Platform in Malaysia for Q4 2018
In a similar trend, Lazada, Shopee, and 11street remain as Malaysia’s three most visited e-commerce platforms with 26.2 million, 20.2 million and 8.4 million online visits respectively.
The most visited Malaysian-based platforms are Lelong with 4.5 million visitors, followed by GoShop at 777,168 visitors and Hermo at 625,419 visitors.
Lazada Vs. Shopee on A Regional View
From a Southeast Asian perspective, Lazada had the highest web traffic in four of the six countries where it operates. Shopee, on the other hand leads in terms of online visits in Indonesia and Vietnam. These two countries are among the most important e-commerce markets in the region, maintaining Shopee as a formidable opponent to Lazada.
Country Highlight: Indonesia
In Indonesia, Tokopedia, Bukalapak, Shopee, and Lazada continue to grow their average traffic on desktop and mobile web. The number 1 player in terms of total visits is Tokopedia and increased 9.3% on average visits in Q4 2018 (168 million monthly web visits).
Bukalapak in 2nd place, grew 20.9% it’s average visitors to 116 million monthly web visits. In 3rd and 4th place was Shopee and Lazada which increased its average visits by 74% and 60.1% respectively.Although only available in a single market, e-commerce businesses such as Tokopedia and Bukalapak remains extremely impressive in the region as it is among the most visited e-commerce platforms in Southeast Asia.
Strongest E-Commerce Merchants in Countries other than Indonesia & Vietnam (other than Lazada & Shopee):
Furthermore, there are other e-commerce players that continue to attract attention at the regional level besides Lazada, Tokopedia, Shopee, and Bukalapak. Among them are Blibli (Indonesia) with 43 million monthly web visits, Tiki (Vietnam) with 35.9 million monthly web visits and Thế Giới Di Động (Vietnam) with 29.4 million monthly web visits.
In addition to the above mentioned e-commerce companies, here are other noteworthy e-commerce companies which performed well in the final quarter of 2018.
Malaysia: 11street ranked 3rd with an average of 8.2 million monthly web visits
Filipina: Zalora ranked 3rd with an average of 2.1 million monthly web visits
Thailand: Chilindo ranked 3rd with an average of 4.3 million monthly web visits
Singapura: Qoo10 at 1st with an average of 9.9 million monthly web visits
The Highest-Ranking E-Commerce Mobile Applications
Today, more than 74% of online traffic received by e-commerce platforms derived from mobile devices. Leading in the mobile app arena is Shopee ranking number one (in the shopping category) on average in Indonesia, Vietnam, Malaysia, and the Philippines on AppStore iOS and Google PlayStore.
Competition between shopping app Lazada and Shopee remains tight in Singapore and Thailand.
Country No.1 in iOS AppStore No.1 in Google PlayStore
The Possibility of a New E-Commerce Leader Mid-2019
We may see a new e-commerce leader in Southeast Asia by August 2019. Leading the charge to the top step would most likely be Tokopedia. The Indonesian e-commerce company was hugely particularly impressive as it was able to challenge for the top spot though it was only available in a single country.
2019 will be ‘crunch time’ for the online marketplace which has extensive plans to broaden its scale and reach by investing in technology and infrastructure in Indonesia. As such, Tokopedia is well positioned to fast-track its development to take hold of the title as the most visited e-commerce platform in the region.
Although Tokopedia almost overtook Lazada mid-2018, the Tencent backed e-commerce, Shopee is also well positioned to capture the top spot as well. Its gains during the Singles’ Day sale boosted its position from 3rd to 2nd to become Lazada’s closest competitor end-2018. Shopee is expected to receive an additional boost through its sale campaigns in March and April
that will run across all countries where they operate.
Will Alibaba’s Lazada and Tokopedia be able to fend off Shopee? We’ll find out by end of 2019.