E-Commerce Landscape in Singapore
Although Singapore is a tiny nation-state with a population of just 5.6 million, it is a major e-commerce market in Southeast Asia. How large exactly? The Singaporean business-to-consumer (B2C) e-commerce market is worth $4.9 billion, and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 8.35% in 2021. The average online spend is $1,456 per year, with shoppers willing to make big-ticket purchases online. If you’re thinking of setting up an e-commerce business in Singapore, there is no better time to do it than now.
In Singapore, revenue in the e-commerce market is projected to reach USD $2,793 million in 2021, according to Statista. Revenue is expected to show an annual growth rate (CAGR 2021-2025) of 9.9%, resulting in a projected market volume of USD $4,079 million by 2025. Singapore e-commerce market’s largest segment is Electronics & Media with a projected market volume of USD $668 million in 2021.
How Covid-19 Has Impacted Singapore’s E-commerce
The outlook for Singapore’s retail industry was bleak even before the coronavirus crisis set in. Singapore’s retail sales dropped by 5.3% year-on-year in January 2020, the 12th straight month of fall.
However, e-commerce platforms in Singapore witnessed a 23% growth in total web visits throughout the first 6 months of 2020, according to data from iPrice. In a single online transaction in the first half of 2020, an average Singaporean spent S$113 online from January to June 2020.
Research firm IGD Asia found that Singapore’s grocery market saw stellar performances too. It is forecasted to be an SGD $9.9 billion industry by 2023, a 14.5% increase from 2018. Online grocery shopping is leading that growth, with players such as RedMart and NTUC FairPrice dominating the local scene.
With the COVID-19 situation persisting, more physical store retailers are jumping on board the e-commerce wagon in Singapore, even traditional, smaller players went online. Many traditional, small wet market grocers have taken to social media and online marketplaces to hawk products, conduct live auctions and even carry out customer relation-building — for example, passing tips on how to prepare dishes using their products.