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May 15, 2022 / 09:43

Vietnam’s e-commerce: driver for economic recovery in post-Covid-19

Omnichannel shopping will still dominate the retail market and businesses need to continue improving their competitiveness to optimize the shopping process.

E-commerce is still growing strongly, contributing to post-pandemic economic recovery, local experts said.

Local consumers shop more on e-commerce floors in Vietnam. Photo: PVcomBank

The market still has a lot of room for development with 71% of Vietnam’s internet users having made at least one online purchase. More than 90% of Vietnamese users will continue to use digital services, and 81% believe online shopping will become an indispensable part of daily life.

Some local experts said that it is undeniable that the strong investment foundation during the pandemic has created momentum for businesses to develop e-commerce. At the same time, the field of digital transformation and online business accounted for a more important proportion of the management and operation of Vietnamese enterprises.

Speaking at an e-commerce conference on May 12, Lazada Vietnam's Head of Government Affairs Vu Thi Minh Tu said e-commerce has undergone substantial changes during the pandemic. The growth momentum of the e-commerce industry began before the pandemic, but in the 2020-2021 period, this market has experienced explosive growth. It is forecast to reach US$39 billion in value by 2050.

In addition, local businesses are increasingly attaching importance to and investing in digital transformation and doing business on e-commerce. They are also aware of the sustainable development vision.

Echoing Tu, Le Minh Trang, a representative from Nielsen, said that in the past two years, the impact of Covid-19 has accelerated the growth of e-commerce. Notably, the trend of omini-channel shopping has experienced remarkable growth, the largest segment recovering from the pandemic.

“The continuous updating and innovation of business methods among current sellers have met the needs of consumers. Their worries about product quality and reliability have gradually disappeared. The rate of participation is increasing rapidly,” Trang said.

According to a recent report on the performance of the e-commerce floor, in the first half of 2022, a number of beauty products, women's fashion, and household goods are the most interested and purchased items on the e-commerce floors of Shopee, Lazada, Tiki, and Sendo. 

And the price segment of VND200,000 ($8.6)-VND5 million ($216) is where more transactions are made on all e-commerce floors. For high-value products which require long-term advice and warranty, consumers still prefer to shop at physical stores and showrooms.

However, e-commerce still has many challenges, with limitations in the ability to control risks related to goods quality, payment methods, setting up flexible shipping routes, and handling customs procedures with optimal operating costs.

Trang suggested that there are three key factors when consumers shop online that sellers need to pay attention to which are prices, quality, and delivery time. “Therefore, in order to compete, businesses need to make more efforts, change their behaviors to meet the needs of consumers,” she underlined.