Cloud-based enterprise resource planning company Dopigo has published its fifth E-Commerce Outlook Survey conducted with more than a thousand e-commerce entrepreneurs across Turkey. According to the results of the research, 46% of the vendors who participated in the survey said that they started e-commerce in 2020. It was seen that the expectations from the marketplaces continued to increase in 2021. While 67% of the participants expect to make the most sales from their marketplaces in 2021, only 17% think they will earn more revenue from their websites.
E-commerce, which has become widespread in recent years, has developed faster than expected with the effect of the pandemic. It has completed the expected growth in the next 5 years in 2020. While wondering what awaits the world in e-commerce in 2021, Dopigo, which offers e-commerce solutions and consultancy to small and medium-sized businesses engaged in e-commerce, published the fifth E-Commerce Outlook Survey.
E-COMMERCE SALES CHANNELS BECOME THE LARGEST SOURCE OF INCOME
Survey participants state that they earn the most income from e-commerce sales channels. It is also noteworthy that physical stores and wholesale sales have experienced a decline due to the effect of the pandemic. It is clear that the traders can continue to survive, mainly thanks to e-commerce. According to the research, supermarkets attract attention as a new player in the categories with the highest sales.
It is seen that many marketplaces started to serve in the supermarket category with the effect of the pandemic as a rival to the “online market” services of large retailers. With the increase of time spent at home, the interest in decoration increased, it is seen that the home and living category ranked first, and the Electronics category fell to the second.
75% OF REVENUES COME FROM ONLINE MARKET PLACES
The closure of physical stores due to restrictions or the fact that people feel unsafe when shopping in physical stores seem to have forced many companies to turn to e-commerce. According to the report, the volume of market places in e-commerce is increasing in Turkey, as in the whole world.
75% of sellers’ e-commerce revenue comes from marketplaces. While only 33% of the participants also have physical stores, 95% sell from online marketplaces such as Trendyol, N11, Hepsiburada, Amazon, and GittiGidiyor. Trendyol, Hepsiburada, and N11 are the most selling marketplaces. The most used channel after the market places is the commercial websites of the companies. 27% of the participants also have their own websites and 20% of their income comes from this channel.
THE TENDENCY TO E-COMMERCE WILL CONTINUE
Dopigo Founding Partner M. Engin Satana, evaluating the results of their research, said, “Especially those whose only sales channel were physical stores had to turn to e-commerce rapidly due to the effect of the pandemic. Due to the pandemic, boutiques, stationery shops, furniture stores, shops selling hobby supplies, and the like decided to switch to e-commerce much faster than in previous years. The entry of these companies into the market has also increased the competition in existing markets because they can offer alternatives at much more affordable prices. This competition triggered the increasing consumption in e-commerce with falling prices. It is obvious that the trend towards e-commerce will continue.”
E-COMMERCE CONTINUES TO BE THE BIGGEST FACTOR IN DIGITALIZATION OF SMEs
In the report, it is pointed out that with the increase of digitalization, tools that will increase e-commerce efficiency have started to diversify. Alternatives such as online accounting software can even eliminate the need for an accountant for SMEs. Especially, e-commerce integrations, which allow SMEs that make multi-channel sales to manage operational processes from a single panel, are the most preferred tool, followed by e-invoice in the second place. The third most preferred tool is specified as pre-accounting software.
SMEs AND LARGE RETAILERS COMPETE IN BRANDING AND DIGITAL MARKETING
Along with the growth expectations, 93.1% of the participants expect to earn at least as much as the investment they will make in 2021. The areas where most of the investments are planned are branding, product purchasing, and digital marketing. While branding was not a prominent item in the surveys of the past years, SMEs now seem to realize the importance of the issue. The increase in the trend towards digital marketing is explained by the fact that physical advertising applications cannot be used effectively enough with the pandemic.
OPERATIONAL PROBLEMS OF E-COMMERCE ENTREPRENEURS
According to the participants, the most time-consuming issue in e-commerce in 2020 is product pricing. Due to the fluctuations in foreign exchange, product pricing has been among the top three in the operational problems list since 2018. This is followed by product packaging and product research. The fact that product packaging is still among the most time-consuming items shows how much the services of warehouse and cargo companies are actually needed. Since 87% of the participants work with an e-commerce integrator, issues such as stock tracking and invoicing, which entered the list in 2018, seem to be no longer an operational problem. Product research takes fourth place in the most time-consuming processes.
DESPITE EVERYTHING 2020 MET ECONOMIC EXPECTATIONS
While 46% of the participants stated that they met their expectations for 2020, 30% stated that they abstained from this issue. The most challenging issues for the surveyed sellers in 2020 were; Increasing indirect costs (shipping prices, sales commissions, and payment commissions) in e-commerce and decreasing profitability rates are stated as the future risk.
51% OF PARTICIPANTS EXPECT GROWTH IN ECONOMY
According to the report, 51% of the survey participants expect growth in the Turkish economy in 2021, while 14.4% expect it to remain the same. 40% of the participants are undecided about whether to invest in 2021. While 48.3% of the participants believe that their investment will yield more than three times, 44.6% think that they will earn as much as their investment.
THE EFFECTS OF THE PANDEMIC ON E-COMMERCE IS EXPECTED TO BE PERMANENT
89% of e-commerce entrepreneurs surveyed believe that e-commerce sales channels will continue to be the channels where they will earn the most income. Expectations from marketplaces increase even more in 2021. While 67% of the participants expect to make the most sales in 2021 from the market places, only 17% think that they will earn the most from their websites.
Source: DHA / Translated by Irem Yildiz