Singapore market characteristics (e-commerce sales)

EC Column


Hello. My name is Sakamoto, consultant.
in this column, I would like to introduce the pros of e-commerce sales in Singapore, the cons of e-commerce sales in Singapore, points to keep in mind, marketing points, and popular external e-commerce in Singapore, regarding the key points when developing cross-border e-commerce for the Singapore market.

Advantages of e-commerce selling in Singapore

High Internet penetration: According to the 2021 Datareportal report, Singapore has an Internet penetration rate of over 84%, providing a broad customer base for online retailers.

Technology-savvy population: According to a 2020 study by We Are Social and Hootsuite, 76% of Singaporeans aged 16-64 purchased something online in the past month.

Robust payment infrastructure: According to World Bank data, Singapore ranks highly for ease of doing business, especially for ease of conducting digital transactions.

English proficiency: The language of instruction in Singapore schools is English, and according to government statistics, many people are proficient in English.

Consumer confidence: Singapore scores highly in the 2020 UN B2C E-Commerce Index, indicating a high level of confidence in online shopping.

Wealthy market: Singapore has one of the highest GDP per capita in the world, approximately $65,233 in 2020 (World Bank data).

High mobile penetration: According to Datareportal's 2021 report, Singapore has approximately 4.2 million mobile Internet users, representing 72% of the total population.

Points to keep in mind

Data protection: Singapore's Personal Data Protection Act (PDPA) mandates strict data protection measures. Failure to comply with these regulations may result in legal problems.

Consumer rights: Be familiar with Singapore's Consumer Protection (Fair Trading) Act (CPFTA) and Lemon Law to avoid violating local consumer rights.

Website localization: While many Singaporeans are fluent in English, providing local currency options and common payment gateways will enhance the user experience.

Loading speed: Singaporeans are accustomed to fast Internet. A slow-loading website can frustrate potential customers and cause them to stop buying and leave.

Price over quality: While price is important, many Singaporean consumers prioritize quality and brand reputation. Make sure your product is of high quality.

Product information: Detailed product descriptions, quality images, and even videos are very important. Singaporeans are often cautious shoppers.

Fast delivery: Due to Singapore's small geographic spread, local consumers typically expect fast delivery service.

Transparent fees: Reduce the risk of customers interrupting and leaving a purchase by clearly indicating upfront any additional shipping or handling fees.

Marketing points

Multicultural audience: Singapore is a multicultural society. A multicultural approach to messaging will resonate with a wider audience.

Local holidays: Promotions can be effective if they coincide with local holidays and events such as Chinese New Year, Diwali, Hari Raya, etc.

Emphasize quality: Singapore consumers value quality and durability. Emphasize the high quality and added value of your products.

Brand loyalty: Singaporeans are more likely to be loyal to brands that provide consistent quality and excellent customer service.

Customer service expectations: High-quality customer service, quick response to inquiries, easy return policy, etc.

Online reviews: Singaporeans often check reviews before making a purchase. It is important to collect many good reviews and respond to bad reviews professionally.

Local influencers: Partnerships with local influencers can be a means of building credibility and appealing to a wide audience.

The brand appeal in the community: Collaborating with local businesses and events can also be useful.

Competitive pricing: Prices must be set appropriately and facilitate price comparisons.

Popular external in Singapore e-commerce

Lazada: Lazada is one of the most popular e-commerce platforms in Singapore. It is well-accepted for its diverse product categories, efficient shipping services, and frequent sales and promotions.

Shopee: Widely accepted by Singapore consumers, especially for its mobile-friendly UI and variety of payment options.

Zalora: An e-commerce platform dedicated to fashion and valued for its high-quality products and efficient delivery.

Qoo10: A very popular online marketplace in Singapore. It features a diverse product range and competitive pricing.

RedMart: Specializes in food and household products and is considered a pioneer in online grocery sales in Singapore.


As mentioned above, understanding the advantages and disadvantages of operating e-commerce in Singapore and making the most of these advantages and disadvantages will help you grow your business. It is also important to enhance the customer experience and strengthen customer loyalty through unique marketing initiatives.

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