Best Strategies for Reaching APAC’s Booming Ecommerce Market


The eCommerce industry globally is growing exponentially. New eCommerce markets are emerging at a rapid pace, and established markets are reaching new highs with fierce competition amongst online businesses. 

Asia-Pacific (APAC) has become an increasingly important market for eCommerce during recent years. Increased mobile internet usage and smartphone penetration are the main drivers of growth. The constant expansion is also down to a growing middle class as well as strong economic gains in China. Currently, APAC leads the global eCommerce growth charge, representing a whopping 64.3% of global eCommerce spending. Moreover, APAC is home to six of the ten fastest-growing retail eCommerce countries, led by India and the Philippines at more than 30% growth, and rounded out by China, Malaysia, Indonesia, and South Korea. However, almost all brands consider Asian eCommerce markets a tough nut to crack with its challenges of language and cultural barriers to overcome. 

Ecommerce Trends in APAC

To better understand the state of eCommerce in APAC, let’s explore the trends in this region that every marketer needs to know. 

  • Mobile-First Shopping

The evolution of smartphones has shifted internet usage massively towards mobile and nowadays most searches are being conducted on mobile. APAC has also witnessed one of the fastest growth rates in mobile phone subscriptions. In Vietnam and Thailand, 97% of smartphone users say that online research has contributed to them making purchase decisions more quickly. Moreover, empowered by mobile, customers are better informed now than ever before. In India, for instance, 96% of smartphone users say that thanks to online research, they’re able to make more informed purchase decisions.

  • Language and Cultural Barriers

APAC is a region of more than 23 countries and 2,197 living languages, thus making cultural differences inevitable. A one-size-fits-all approach to eCommerce will not work in this region. Specific consideration should be given to each market to overcome language and cultural barriers. Rather than simply offering translated marketing materials, any content, including images, should be carefully selected to accommodate the cultural preferences of the specific target audience. 

  • More Short Video Content

The rise of short video content has also attracted a lot of attention from media, brands and consumers during recent years. The primary vehicle for content consumption for people in this region is via their mobile devices while they’re on the go, so the shorter the content is, the better. For instance, Chinese people average more than 60 minutes per day on short video apps.

By incorporating video ad formats in your app marketing strategy, you can mimic the short content apps and encourage users to take action. A video ad allows you to tell a story about your offering and demonstrate your features and benefits in a more compelling way than allowed by a static image and caption.

Case Study

Aarki recently delivered a successful eCommerce campaign in a specific location in APAC. The campaign registered incredible performance in a short period of time. The campaign generated a 237.99% increase in Conversion Rate (CR) and a 269.51% increase in Install Rate (IR). Taking a closer look at the campaign performance we noticed an 82.85% increase in installs and a 69.29% decrease in the Cost Per Install (CPI).

The campaign’s triumph was driven by several factors, but for this article we will explore the creative strategies that paved the way to the success for this eCommerce app. 

Basic Creative Strategies for eCommerce App Across APAC

     1. Flash Sales

Incorporating flash sales into your ad creatives can help attract more users to your app.

Customers tend to buy immediately, rather than waiting. Offering coupons or discounts which are only available for limited time can trigger an impulse purchase because users don’t want to miss out.

APAC ecommerce flashsale

     2. Free Shipping

Offering free shipping can be one of the best ways to grab users’ attention and prompt them to purchase. The idea of getting something free, whatever it is, is always tempting. And besides, shipping option and costs are often the steps where users abandon their shopping carts.

APAC ecommerce free shipping
Asian shoppers enjoy free shipping on 85% of their online orders, showing just how important shipping is to competitiveness. Moreover, 46% of online shoppers say they add extra items to their cart to qualify for free shipping, while 36% of shoppers abandon their cart if delivery fees are too high.

     3. Evergreen Discounts

Keeping customers interested and engaged with your app is one of the biggest challenges. For most consumers, discovering discounts is an essential part of their overall app experience. Engage users by offering evergreen discounts. This will help you increase sales and meet revenue goals.

APAC ecommerce evergreen dicounts

     4. Celebrity Endorsements

Having a familiar face as a product ambassador is one of the fastest and easiest ways for companies to create brand awareness. When a well-known celebrity endorses a product, that product gains immediate credibility, not to mention the brand benefits from the celebrity’s audience reach. 

APAC ecommerce celebrity endorsements
Think about it. Would you rather buy sports shoes endorsed by the writer of this article, or a pair endorsed by professional boxer Manny Pacquiao? If your opinion about that celebrity is positive, it makes the brand or product advertised much more enticing.

With Aarki, you can identify the most effective creative strategy/combination of strategies for your eCommerce app and optimize your campaign performance. Keep an eye on our Creative Insights for new and innovative solutions.  


Topics: Creative Insights, Marketplace Insights