Lazada propels digital pivot of sellers as consumers await biggest 11.11 deals

Jessica Fenol, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 30 2020 11:50 AM

MANILA - Lazada urged sellers to leverage its online platform to reach consumers during the COVID-19 pandemic as the Alibaba group mounts its 12th 11.11 global sale event this year.

Users in China have long been using online platforms to shop, but it's a different story in Southeast Asia, Lazada Group co-president and regional head of Commercial Jessica Liu said during Alibaba's 
virtual event. 

The pandemic and resulting lockdowns pushed residents to shop more or shop online for the first time, she said.

Liu said Southeast Asia has one of the "fastest growing" e-commerce sectors in the world, which is expected to grow 4X by 2025.

"All of us know that 2020 is tough for all traditional businesses in Southeast Asia because of the pandemic. Our team works very hard to help merchants navigate online channels...We see more and more brands are not hesitant to leverage online. They are eager to join Lazada platform to meet consumer needs. I believe this is a good opportunity for brands and sellers to leverage Lazada to communicate to consumers in this area," Liu said.

“Alibaba is more committed than ever to empowering our merchants for their digital transformation. This really gives 11.11 a different meaning this year in light of the pandemic,” Alibaba group chief market office Chris Tung said.

This year's 11.11 is focused on giving consumers the most attractive deals at lowest prices, Liu said.

Lazada said over 200 million deals and $2 million coin rewards will be available on the platform for its Southeast Asian market during the sale event, on top of vouchers and free shipping perks.

Its nearly 400 hubs across Southeast Asia are also ready to fulfill orders that can support up to 20x the normal day volume on Nov. 11, Liu said.

CELEBRITIES AND SHOPPERTAINMENT

Young e-commerce consumers in Southeast Asia are easily attracted to entertainment such as games, live streaming and celebrities, Liu said, thus the decision to launch Korean actor Lee Min Ho as its first regional brand ambassador.

Lee Min Ho was chosen to inject more "happiness" in the partnership with South Korea's "premiere leading man," Lazada earlier said. 

Lazada said the Korean actor would be able to "capture the imagination" of shoppers and inspire happiness across Southeast Asia especially in the time of uncertainty as the world grapples with the coronavirus pandemic.

Lazada regional ambassador Lee Min Ho with his counterparts in Southeast Asia including Kathryn Bernardo for Lazada Philippines. Screengrab

It also launched games and other interactive activities so consumers can have fun while shopping online.

Tung said China sales could grow this year since the 11.11 sale signals the start of the gift giving season where consumers spend not just for themselves but also for their loved ones.

Self-gifting is also a trend in the Philippines as consumers look for ways to uplift their spirits during the pandemic, a Facebook Philippines official earlier said.

In 2019, Filipinos spent 205 million minutes on Lazada last Nov. 11. On the first hour, 1 million shoppers bought 1 million items, Lazada said.

This year, the pandemic has also changed the product mix with healthy items, toys, home decorations, beddings, kitchenware and work-from-home stuff gaining more popularity, Liu said.

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