In 2022, Singapore’s ecommerce revenue is projected to reach USD 7.29 billion. According to Supply Chain Asia, a Singapore based not-for-profit professional body, in 2020 Singapore was the world’s fastest growing ecommerce logistics market with 63.4 percent year-over-year growth.
Ecommerce and Logistics: Singapore’s Twin Success
The Singapore Government has created an excellent ecommerce ecosystem supported by world-class infrastructure, digitized economy, and superior connectivity to other Asian countries for trade. Ecommerce in Singapore is booming thanks to its enviable Internet coverage of 90 percent, which is amongst the highest in the world driven by robust mobile and fixed Internet infrastructure. Singapore’s smartphone usage stands at a good 78 percent of the population. Out of a population of 5.87 million citizens, 90 percent or 5.29 million Singaporeans are connected to the Internet. Singapore’s active online shoppers are expected to touch 4.1 million in number by 2025.
Investing in Singapore for ecommerce has also seen plenty of traction. According to the World Bank, Singapore has been ranked right at the top as the best country in Asia to do business, and the second best globally. In 2021, the Government of Singapore in a bid to further consolidate the country’s position as a regional and global ecommerce hub announced initiatives to bolster its entire digital infrastructure; by ramping up digital connectivity, 5G coverage, data analytics, cybersecurity prowess, and payment systems including PayNow Corporate and E-Invoicing Network.
Logistics companies are at the heart of this ecommerce ecosystem in Singapore as they play the vital role of transporting products and services of online ventures to their customers. The post-purchase experience is vital for customer satisfaction and growth. According to Mordor Intelligence, a reputed Indian market intelligence firm, the Singapore freight and logistics market is expected to achieve a growth rate of 8 percent during 2022-2027. The gross domestic product (GDP) of the transportation and storage industry in Singapore stood at 30.7 billion Singapore Dollars in 2021. Incidentally, each of the world’s top 25 logistics companies have operations in Singapore.
Logistics entails the end-to-end process of receiving and storing inventory in a warehouse, receiving orders, processing orders, budgeting, handling products which includes picking and packing, working with a shipping carrier, shipping or transporting products to the customer’s address, and in some cases management of returns or exchanges. The entire activity cycle from receiving orders from the customer to shipping it to the customer is called order fulfillment. Hence shipping is a part of order fulfillment, and actually the last leg of the whole process. An ecommerce seller should get the shipping strategy right with proper research to help select the right shipping carrier who is efficient and cost effective. This is crucial for the bottomline.
The Critical Criteria to choose the Right Shipping Carrier for your Ecommerce Business
As an ecommerce seller, you have to juggle myriad requirements to keep your business running smoothly ensuring customer satisfaction and profitability. Getting the art of shipping right is crucial to an ecommerce player as this is the deciding factor for customer loyalty. The package must reach the customer in time at the right address. A touchy point in the supply chain is how a shipping carrier must be chosen to deliver your products. As you give away the control over your products to another outfit it is natural to feel anxious and wonder if the shipping carrier also aligns with your requirements, and takes ownership to deliver promptly, reliably and accurately. Currently for customers, a satisfying delivery experience takes precedence over product range and price savings, in order to remain loyal to your enterprise. Hence, choosing the right shipping partner is paramount. Here’s a checklist for you to tick-off:
- Platform Integration: The shipping carrier’s software should successfully integrate with the seller’s ecommerce platform and other ecommerce solutions. If the seller is on multiple ecommerce platforms then multichannel integration is vital along with scalability for a growing business.
- Pricing: A lookout on pricing should be based on which shipping carrier is the cheapest and fastest with least compromise on quality of other requirements. Thus, your profit margin can be maximized. Is the carrier ready for negotiations on pricing in the future to accommodate fluctuations in sales is also to be considered.
- Speed: Amazon has upped the game with same-day and two-hour deliveries causing customers to expect super-express delivery timelines. Hence a review of whether the carrier’s shipping turnaround time is speedy enough must be found out.
- Customer Support: A check must be done if the shipping carrier offers robust customer support in the form of direct phone lines, live chat and automated bots to answer quick queries.
- Real-time Inventory Management: The shipping carrier must be aware of fluctuating inventories to be on the same page as the seller with regard to inventory loops.
- Software: must have a friendly user interface so that all levels of employees find it easy to use.
- Order Management: Order status, tracking and real-time communication capabilities are a necessary requirement for customers to alleviate delivery anxiety. Customers should be notified through an on-site order tracking page, periodic emails or SMS messages. These features also help customers who want to follow up on the sequence of reverse processes when they return or exchange items.
- Printing Options: The shipping carrier must have capabilities to print pick lists and shipping labels accurately in order to classify and organize shipments.
- Analytics: Data capturing and analysis provisions go a long way in understanding on-ground metrics to help the ecommerce seller make strategic business decisions.
- Returns Management: There must be checks on returns and prompt management of the same. Hassle-free reverse logistics help retain customers. Quick and free return management is all-important to maximize resale opportunities.
- Network: Ask the shipping carrier whether they have a vast access to a range of locations to serve the maximum number of customers.
- Warehouse Presence: Do they have warehouses to store your products in a secure fashion? An added bonus is temperature controlled warehouses in case you have perishable products.
- Transport: Ownership of a varied fleet of transport vehicles is an asset and especially so if they run on the latest technology enabling tracking, security and sustainability.
- Security: Any ecommerce seller is always jittery about their products getting lost, damaged, delayed or stuck via shipping. Hence proper security policies from the shipping carrier is mandatory.
- Insurance: Shipping carriers must offer strong insurance cover to compensate in case of fire, theft or natural calamities which go a long way in giving the ecommerce seller protection from unforeseen events.
- Shipment Marketing: An effective way to ensure repeat purchases for an ecommerce seller is to enable order tracking emails display complementary items to a customer’s order. Thus customers are driven to their next purchase which has a high rate of success. These come under the ambit of personalized product recommendations.
- Reputation: Read testimonials from the shipping carrier’s customers on reliable online review forums to gauge their background and history of service. Also, a clever way to verify the carrier’s antecedents is to research any of their case-studies produced by them involving their clients and approach those clients directly to get the clear picture.
- Data Privacy: Your customers’ addresses and other personal details are in the possession of your shipping carrier. Hence, it is important to understand whether they have high integrity in their privacy policies to prevent data breaches.
As an ecommerce seller, you can use the above parameters to gauge which shipping carrier to partner with to reach out to your customer base. It is recommended that you do your homework thoroughly to get answers to what you really want from a shipping carrier. The right partnership will certainly give your enterprise a competitive edge over your competitors. We have drawn up a list of the top 6 shipping services in Singapore for ecommerce. Each has its own unique selling propositions. Let us discover them for you, so that you can make an informed decision.
J&T Express is a freight service e-commerce company supporting the growth of ecommerce enterprises and specializes in logistics and package delivery. Founded in 2015 by Jet Lee and Tony Chen, in Jakarta, Indonesia; the J&T Express network runs across thirteen countries. These include Singapore, Indonesia, Vietnam, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, Cambodia, China, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Mexico, Brazil, and Egypt.
Having initiated operations in Singapore in 2020, J&T Express offers three core e-commerce solutions which includes last-mile delivery, fulfillment and international delivery. The company uses automated sorting warehouses in Indonesia and Singapore.
Headquartered in Changi, Singapore ABX Logistics commenced operations in 1989. It primarily focuses on freight transport by road and also indulges in transportation services, while also being transport agents.
GD Express set up operations in Singapore in 2007. It was established in Malaysia in 1997 and now spans across over 150 centers in Malaysia and Singapore. In 2011 Singapore Post became its substantial shareholder. GD Express specializes in express delivery and logistics.
Its distribution network is interlinked with the Integrated Hub Inbound Outbound System (HIOS) having a comprehensive security surveillance system. Central to its functioning is a 67,000 sq feet all-weather clearing hub and a 140,000 square feet packaging and warehouse complex. GD Express has more than 1300 delivery vans and trucks with fleet GPS tracking.
Based in Singapore Ninja Van was founded in 2014 by Lai Chang Wen, Tan Boxian and Shaun Chong, with the core objective being to provide a hassle-free delivery service for ecommerce retailers in the country. Currently the company operates in six key markets in South-East Asia across Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam and Philippines.
Ninja Van has been funded to the tune of USD 1.10 B by 29 investors including DPDgroup, B Capital Group, and Monk's Hill Ventures. Betting on the increasing demand for express delivery, the firm unveiled a 80,000 square feet automated hub in Singapore in 2021.
Essentially an app-based platform providing last-mile B2C courier services, Ninja Van a tech-enabled express logistics company serves e-stores and other enterprises, with clients including Unilever and Lazada. It offers to its customers NinjaChat, a social messaging based platform with live-chat functionality to help resolve any issues.
Lalamove initiated its Singapore operations in 2014. It was founded in Hong Kong By Shing Chow Shing-yuk in 2013 and was originally christened Easyvan.
Lalamove Singapore offers on-demand and same-day delivery services by using technology to connect your business with its delivery drivers on its mobile and web apps. Different types of courier modes are available like Bike (Motorcycle), Car, 1.7m Van and 2.4m Van.
Incorporated in 1977 DHL Express (Singapore) Pte. runs as a logistic company providing freight forwarding using planes, trucks, ships, and trains; and also offers warehousing services. DHL operates in more than 220 countries globally. DHL Express has completely automated its operations and offers a state-of-the-art warehouse inventory system.
In Singapore, DHL has clocked a transit time performance of 96.8 percent courtesy quick clearance processes. It also offers pre-noon city deliveries. There are also a bouquet of optional services like insurance, packaging, invoicing, and customs assistance offered to dedicated small business account customers. For DHL Express account holders, a special web-based tracking tool called ProView is available which tracks all your import shipments in real time. Additionally it estimates the number of shipments that will arrive and the amount of inventory that needs to be sold. You can set to whom automatic notifications need to be sent. The service is free of cost.
Which Shipping Service is Right for Your Ecommerce Business?
The right shipping service for your ecommerce business is not a conclusion to be arrived at from the instance of others. You need to process all the information given above and decide what is suited for your ecommerce business.
The growing ecommerce industry needs the aid of shipping services for connectivity and profitability. The right shipping service is the one that will exploit your potential to the fullest in a competitive market.
How Hopstack can Help You?
Hopstack integrates with all ecommerce platforms in South-East Asia. Hopstack offers a unified shipping automation module that integrates with shipping services and aggregators to instantly retrieve and compare shipping rates, automate shipping tasks, generate and print shipping labels. Its powerful rule-engine helps to set business rules around shipping activities. Hopstack offers a full suite of WMS solutions which can seamlessly integrate with other warehouse applications and expedite the shipping process and enable inventory optimization. Fastest picking processes for expedited orders are suggested. A WMS advises on the correct packaging options to protect items, print shipping labels and manage prioritized orders for faster delivery.
We can also give you a first hand account, where you can directly interact with us by scheduling a demo.