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Fashion products are the most easily sold online items in Vietnam, followed by high-tech products and mobile phones.
A survey in July 2016 conducted by Asia Plus in HCM City and Hanoi showed that 67 percent of people buy goods online, with 47 percent of them buying from Facebook.
The buyers bought goods online at least once, while 23 percent said they did it regularly, at least once a week.
There are many reasons to shop via social networks: ease of placing orders; reasonable prices; opportunity to haggle about prices; and regularly updated information.
The familiarity is also an important reason as 21 percent of polled people said this was why they bought goods via social media.
The 2015 E-commerce Report also pointed out that shopping via forums or social networks increased from 53 percent in 2014 to 68 percent in 2015.
Shop owners believe that it is more effective to sell goods on social networks than on e-commerce trading floors.
Tran Trong Tuyen, secretary general of VECOM (Vietnam E-commerce Association), said that e-commerce trading floors and social media were two different distribution channels which don’t compete with each other. The key to business success lies in reasonable investment allocation to sales channels.
A survey by Bizweb of 2,000 online shop owners released in early 2016 also showed that 51 percent thought Facebook was an effective sales channel, while only 29 percent thought so about e-commerce trading floors.
“This shows that e-commerce trading floor seems to be inferior to social networks if considering business efficiency,” said Tuyen, who is also CEO of Bizweb.
He said that social networks helped businesses more easily and quickly access clients and assisted buyers and sellers in making direct interactions through real-time comments, messages and consultancy – all of which e-commerce trading floors cannot do.
Tran Tuan Anh, a senior executive of Shopee Vietnam, commented that e-commerce floors should try to develop direct interactions between sellers and buyers to accurately simulate Vietnamese shoppers’ behavior.
A Shopee’s report shows that when integrating interaction into e-commerce trading floors, 71 percent of users talk to goods owners before buying goods.