Growth is speeding up in the Philippine eCommerce sphere. Therefore, the battle between B2C platforms is becoming more important. Likewise, the rewards for success are getting bigger. And a very small group of platforms enjoy the lion’s share of these rewards. In fact, just four platforms make up more than 90% of net traffic. In this article we break down the platforms currently in the lead, and explain their business models.
The only homegrown player in the Top 5, Argomall is the biggest Philippine online retailer by monthly traffic. The smartphone retailer was set up in 2015, and has grown impressively quickly since then. Some analysts see this as a sign that the Philippines is ready to compete against overseas businesses in the B2C eCommerce race. Its wholly local infrastructure of warehouses and logistics solutions has meant quick delivery times for its customers, while strong warranty and guarantee policies have won user trust.
Global C2C giant eBay is relatively popular in the Philippines, where consumers are hungry for great value bargains. The thriving second-hand user-driven marketplace forms the foundation for eBay’s expansions into the B2C sphere. eBay Store acts as more of a traditional B2C marketplace, with brands selling their own goods as well as retailers selling a variety of brands. However, in the Philippines despite its C2C strengths, eBay still trails far behind market leaders Lazada and Shopee, coming in 4th place as an eCommerce platform.
Coming in at number three is Zalora, the Singapore-based fashion and cosmetics retailer. The platform is one of only three in the country to break more than a million monthly visits. Zalora’s impressive calendar of more than 50,000 products boasts both renowned international brands as well as up-and-comers from the Philippines. This is part of an ongoing tactic in each region Zalora operates, selling both globally respected products and raising the profile of local brands.
Shopee’s monthly traffic figures are far ahead of the previous three platforms on this list. At more than 15 million, Shopee dwarfs Zalora’s numbers more than ten times over. What’s most impressive is how quickly Shopee has grown from its 2015 launch to challenging Lazada in almost every major SEA market. The Singaporean eCommerce giant began as a C2C platform but is now just as strongly associated with its B2C offerings in the minds of its many customers throughout Southeast Asia. Shopee uses a mobile-first strategy. It’s no surprise, then, that the platform is #1 on both the Google Play and Apple App stores.
The king of B2C eCommerce in the Philippines, Lazada has a monthly traffic lead of around 10 million over Shopee. Lazada also boasts the biggest presence on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Lazada supports C2C, B2C, cross-border, and flagship brand sellers. Its biggest sell is its highly developed logistics capabilities, offering same-day and next-day delivery in many urban areas. The company is constantly expanding its network, with new warehouses opening up new opportunities throughout the country. Lazada, like Shopee, offers products in dozens of categories. In the Philippines, the most popular of these is fashion.
If you’re interested to read more about eCommerce in the Philippines, check out our blog’s recent overview of the country or check out our brand-new Philippines eCommerce Market Guide. In this guide we go into greater detail about a wide range of topics touching on every facet of eCommerce in the country and how to sell your products there.