Expanding Your Business Abroad by Leveraging on Marketplaces

Mar_Expanding Your Business Abroad by Leveraging on Marketplaces 1

Due to global travel restrictions, only a total of 1600 Singapore businesses ventured overseas, a drop of 38%. However, businesses that continued to pursue internationalism expanded in diverse ways by participating in virtual trade fair, online seminar, and networking events. They have also quickly establish market presence by joining digital eCommerce platforms.


Growth in Southeast Asia

Mar_Expanding Your Business Abroad by Leveraging on Marketplaces 2


Business owners have rightfully recognised the importance of overseas expansion, especially in Southeast Asia as it is in a strategic position for market entry expansion. eCommerce growth in Southeast Asia has accelerated by a decade in the past year and Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, and Vietnam will be leading the charge when it comes to market growth in 2021. Growth in Southeast Asia will be buffeted by increasingly affordable internet accessibility and decreasing smartphone prices, removing barriers that have previously limited the potential of eCommerce in the region.

How Marketplaces Support Overseas Expansion Businesses Online

Expanding Your Business Abroad by Leveraging on Marketplaces-04

Indeed, businesses must act fast to take advantage of opportunities brought about by the rise of eCommerce in Southeast Asia. Businesses can now list their products on marketplace platforms such as Shopee and Lazada, giving merchants access to new, cross-border market, lowering the entry barriers for small businesses, and enabling economy inclusion. 

Shifting Businesses Online

Mar_Expanding Your Business Abroad by Leveraging on Marketplaces 4-1

Online marketplaces remove physical barriers, such as the need to choose a suitable physical location and renovation work, which increase expenses when expanding one’s businesses overseas, and business owners will be pleased to know that leveraging on these online marketplaces will also translate to higher sales and lower costs. For example, the rental will no longer a factor limiting overseas business expansion, since there will no longer be a need for a physical storefront. Not having a physical storefront also means being able to sell a larger variety of products round the clock and reaching consumers from various parts of a country. Being able to bypass the physical barriers, such as the retail floor area, store operating hours and geographical location, will hence increase the sales potential of the product. 


Other benefits of having products listed on marketplaces regionally include increasing consumer awareness across the region. Instead of being limited to just a physical storefront in a home market, online marketplace listings help your products reach new consumers in overseas markets without needing to spend on costly advertising campaigns. Furthermore, the vast nature of the online marketplace means multiple products can be launched at once, allowing consumers to choose from a wider range of product offerings. Different markets may respond differently to the various product ranges, and large concurrent product launch on the online platform allows businesses to observe individual market trends and focus efforts on specific products more efficiently and effectively.

Benefits of Online Marketplaces

Consumer preference is shifting in favour of online marketplaces not only because of its wide product offerings but also because of the added advantage of shopping at their convenience, be it on their desktop or through a smartphone application. Items ordered online are also delivered directly to the consumer, saving them the hassle of needing to go shopping in stores.


Furthermore, marketplaces allow businesses to track inventories online, thus improving supply chain efficiencies and the delivery fulfilment process. This simplifies the supply chain process for businesses, a significant added advantage since expanding operations regionally through traditional methods risk complicating and overwhelming logistical operations, especially for small local businesses which are less experienced in dealing with these logistical changes. Marketplaces, such as Shopee and Lazada, also have strong reputations that consumers trust, and can thus be a benefit to brands that consumers are less familiar with. This is a crucial factor to consider when expanding overseas since it can strengthen consumer awareness and improve consumer perception products. Logistics specialists with a regional presence can help businesses to expand and grow overseas. UrbanFox, for example, has a strong and growing presence in Singapore, Malaysia, and Vietnam, and plans to expand into Indonesia and Philippines soon. It provides its customers with end-to-end logistics capability, meaning that overseas expansion is no longer a difficult and tedious process that it once was.

Expand Overseas with UrbanFox

UrbanFox can help businesses expand regionally in these dynamic and fast-growing Southeast Asian markets. In Malaysia and Vietnam, UrbanFox has partnership with popular online marketplaces - Lazada, Shopee, Qoo10, Tiki Corporation and 11street (PrestoMall) - and more than 711,000 sq. ft of warehousing to cater to substantial amounts of inventories needed by customers. As such, we create a seamless shopping experience for the consumer by combining the strengths of both the digital and the physical.


Our proprietary platform, OmniFox is built to empower brands to either scale up or to launch their business online, with integration of channels, like popular B2C marketplaces and our B2B solutions. We aim to create a seamless and fuss-free process for businesses, allowing online businesses to take advantage of market potential in Southeast Asia's eCommerce market easily. Our integrated inventory management system also allows businesses to stay efficient and competitive since orders can be processes and pushed into out delivery platform for fulfilment automatically.


Learn more about OmniFox and other ways to grow your business regionally by contacting one of our urban logistics specialists today.


*this article has been updated in 2021



UF Blog - Contact Us D-1