Retailers urged to exploit new shopping trend

Tuesday, Oct 14, 2014 08:20

The technology  was becoming a tool to support retail business and changing shopping experiences.  — Photo phunuhiendai

HA NOI (Biz Hub) — With the growing number of smartphone users in Viet Nam in the digital era, e-commerce is fast becoming a new shopping trend that domestic retailers can use to their advantage.

At a forum that the Association of Vietnamese Retailers (AVR) organised yesterday, Alan Treadgold, a retail business expert, urged the retailers to apply modern technologies to bring convenience and new experiences to shoppers.

Treadgold said the landscape for Vietnamese retail business was changing and technology was at the heart of this transformation.

He pointed out that technology was becoming a tool to support retail business and changing shopping experiences. According to Alan, to achieve success, retailers must have a customer-centred approach, apply digital technologies and keep innovating.

Although Viet Nam was one of the top 10 markets which retailers found most attractive, modern trade channels accounted for around 25 per cent of the market, which was low in comparison with other countries such as Singapore, China and Malaysia, as well as the Phillipines and Thailand, with percentages ranging from 33 to 90 per cent, according to AVR president Dinh Thi My Loan.

In particular, the development of e-commerce and online retail remained a far cry from its potential, although e-commerce was anticipated to be a new shopping trend, Loan said.

She added that the lack of consumers' trust in companies, inconvenient websites and the uncertainty of security were among the causes of this.

According to Dang Thuy Ha of Nielsen, a digital shopping segmentation survey showed that 56 per cent of consumers refrained from purchasing products online because of inconvenient websites.

She stressed that convenience was the most important factor for online business and retail business was no longer as simple as in the past because it now operated on the basis of a network model with the participation of numerous entities, including stores, applications and e-commerce, as well as tablets, smartphones, computers and social media.

As of end-2013, there were 724 supermarkets, 132 shopping centres and several hundred convenience stores, more than 8,500 traditional markets and one million small-scale stores run by households in Viet Nam.

The country aimed to have around 1,200 to 1,300 supermarkets, 180 trade centres and 157 shopping centres by end-2020. — VNS

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