July 20, 2022

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With value-adding services, e-commerce to persist despite looser restrictions

People will continue to shop online even after coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) restrictions have been loosened as long as businesses provide more value than they did during pre-pandemic times, according to e-commerce company partners of ShopBack, a cashback rewards program.  

Panda Pro, a subscription program under FoodPanda PH, offers customers exclusive monthly deals and benefits brand partners through promotions. 

“There is a habit that’s been created,” said Amer Bakshi, head of strategic partnerships of FoodPanda PH, at ShopBack’s July 19 event celebrating its seventh anniversary. “At the end of the day, having multiple options won’t stop them from purchasing from you. It just enhances it, because it doubles down on their decision that, ‘This is where I was purchasing from. I’m most comfortable [with this platform]. I know how it works.’”

Nathalie C. Salcedo, growth lead of local grocery delivery service MetroMart, added that convenience means being present on all channels instead of converting customers from offline to online.

“It’s providing different options to consumers who value convenience. It’s also a matter of creating that relationship,” she said. “We’ve instilled trust in them. That’s something we want to keep and improve on.”  

Edamama, which offers baby and maternal products and services, integrated its channel leading to its highest gross merchandising value (GMV) since its launch in 2019.

The platform wants to maintain its 50% client repeat rate. “There will never be a shortage of babies in the Philippines,” said Karla M. Siguitan, Edamama’s director of brand and community. “If we won’t use it for our babies, it’s not going in the app.”  

Two-thirds (or 67%) of Filipino consumers who purchased online plan to continue to buy online even after quarantine restrictions are removed, per global measurement company NielsenIQ in March 2021. The Chicago-headquartered firm also noted that the change in Filipinos’ shopping culture due to the pandemic crisis is becoming permanent. 

ShopBack, which is gearing up for its year-end shopping festival ShopFest, is investing P40 million to market the event through podcasts, radio ads, and billboards. 

In last year’s festival, which covered six sales dates from September to December, the ShopBack app was opened 60.9 million times leading to 51 million user redirects and P12 billion in overall sales. About 330,000 diapers and 375 million calories were also delivered during the four-month period. 

“People are getting smarter about how they spend their money,” said Mary Jane P. Legaspi, business-to-business affiliate marketing lead of e-commerce marketplace Lazada PH. “We have been [coming out of the challenges] of the pandemic by introducing promos and prioritizing vouchers to our consumers,” she said. — Patricia B. Mirasol