Shopee Philippines hits 3 million downloads

As it turns two years old this month, mobile shopping platform Shopee Philippines has had its app downloaded more than 3 million times, giving it No. 1 ranking on both App Store and Google Play.

Across Southeast Asia and Taiwan, Shopee had more than 40 million downloads in the first half of this year.

Shopee head of commercial business Macy Castillo says the platform is different from competitors as it is 100 per cent market-based.

“Starting with our headquarters in Singapore, we’re now in seven countries,” says Castillo. “We’re mobile first, so that sort of differentiates us from those who came earlier. They are more for desktop users”

Castillo, who previously worked for online fashion site Zalora, says Shopee is just a platform, with the real commerce happening between the sellers and buyers.

“What we did was make sure our buyers and sellers could talk to each other. If there’s a problem or question about a product, the sellers and buyers can chat on the app.”

Compared to other countries where engagement is estimated at 75 per cent, about 85 per cent of Shopee buyers in the Philippines actually chat with sellers before a purchase.

As part of seller education, the first Shopee University class was held in February last year, and the project has since visited 29 cities and been attended by thousands of participants. Shopee plans to further expand and improve the service.

Lately, Shopee has noted that more men are shopping online, even buying beauty products such as toner, facial wash, anti-aging creams, perfume and the like, says Castillo.

Sales last year reached US$2.5 billion, 900 per cent growth over the previous year.

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