The digitalisation wave and push towards online shopping in 2020 has helped widen the reach and patronage of the likes of Shopee.

In its recent 4QFY2020 ended in December, the e-commerce platform, which is owned by NYSE-listed Sea Group reported a 178.3% y-o-y surge in revenue to US$842.2 million ($1.1 billion).

In this time, its gross merchandise value surged by 112.5% on year to US$11.9 billion, while total orders in the quarter had hit 1.0 billion, a 134.6% increase from the year before.

For the full-year, Shopee’s adjusted revenue plus sales incentives net off was US$2.5 billion. 

See: Sea Limited goes deeper into the red with FY20 net loss of US$1.62 bil despite 101.1% surge in total revenue

The company – which has a presence in Southeast Asia and Taiwan – is now doubling down its efforts to reach out to customers as they shop and spend more online.

For instance, orders on its Shopee Mall – a by-invite-only premium retail space reserved for brand owners and authorised distributors – has grown 10 times since its launch in June 2017.

The number of official stores on Shopee Mall has also doubled in the past year, as brands have been expanding their presence online.

Shopee’s CEO Chris Feng says that Shopee Mall “has been an integral part of our business”.

“Today, Shopee Mall houses more than 20,000 international and local brands, a four-fold increase from when we first launched in 2017,” he notes.

Feng is looking to strengthen support for brands to boost their online presence, drive sales and serve consumers better, going forward.

“We will also continue to innovate our platform, services and features to meet the ever-changing needs of our consumers, delivering a seamless and fun shopping experience,” he adds.

In line with this, Shopee has rolled out two programmes to help high performing brands to maximise their online growth potential.

The first is the ‘Regional Champion Brands Programme’, in which 16 brands will receive priority support in the areas of marketing, innovation and insights.

The second is the ‘100 Million Dollar Club’ where the first ten brands to achieve US$100 million in gross merchandise value will be given special perks such as increased campaign exposure.

Aside from these, Shopee will also have a series of new initiatives to help brands acquire new consumers, increase consumer retention and optimise their online performance.

For instance, the platform is looking to scale up its mega shopping events and brand collaborations to boost brands’ online visibility and capture new customers.

It will also allow brands to continuously connect and engage with existing consumers through its suite of in app engagement tools.

Shopee’s plans are timely given that e-commerce in Asia Pacific is projected to grow by 13% between 2020 and 2024.

This translates to a transaction value of some US$2.4 trillion in 2020, to over US$3.9 trillion by 2024, according to the Global Payments Report released by FIS on Mar 3.

The e-commerce market back home is slated to grow by 40% from US$7 billion in 2020 to reach US$10 billion in 2024.

This will be driven by m-commerce, or mobile commerce, which is the purchase and sale of goods and services on wireless handheld devices like smartphones.

Meanwhile, Malaysia’s e-commerce market is projected to increase by 71% to US$13 billion in 2024, while that in both Vietnam and the Philippines is expected to double to US$26 billion and US$10 billion respectively.

With the highest growth rate in Asia Pacific, Indonesia’s e-commerce market is forecast to surge from US$25 billion in 2020 to US$51 billion in 2024, FIS’ report indicates.