Not tech-savvy? You can still set up an online business with Shopmatic
By Benjamin Cher May 27, 2016
- Simplifying technology for everyone to sell online
- Looking to expand into HK and other markets
E-COMMERCE is booming in South-East Asia, but the lack of technical knowledge and the high cost of hiring skilled people have left many unable to move online.
This is an issue Shopmatic hopes to solve, by helping businesses build an online footprint, whether it is setting up an online storefront or marketplace, or integrating a payment gateway.
“We are taking out the technology-savviness requirements from anyone, so they can start building their own online sites,” says its cofounder and chief executive officer Anurag Avula.
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The Singaporean startup has various templates in different categories that cater to any business, from services to products, with a single click.
It has also tied up with PayPal Holdings Inc and Aramex as its payment and logistics partners respectively.
“We also help sellers list on eBay, Amazon and even Lazada,” says Anurag, speaking to Digital News Asia (DNA) in Singapore recently.
“We give the entire ecosystem to the seller, and it’s a subscription-based model at S$38 (US$27) per month,” he adds.
Users can use their own domain names as well, instead of the Shopmatic subdomain, for their online store.
The company launched in India first, about three months ago, then in its home market of Singapore last month.
“One of the reasons why we wanted to launch in India first is because the tech-savviness level there is much lower than in Singapore – if we could get the India product right, for everyone else it will be an easier follow-through,” says Anurag.
Genesis and challenges
The inspiration for Shopmatic came when the founders were working in PayPal, where they were tasked with growing the US payment giant’s Asia Pacific market.
“We talked to SMEs (small and medium enterprises) and sole proprietorships, and the pain point wasn’t that they didn’t understand the benefits of going online, but that the challenges were significant,” says Anurag.
“They didn’t really understand how to build a website and payment gateway, and integrate all of it,” he adds.
Thus, Shopmatic’s key focus is in making sure its platform is simple to use, by removing the technology barriers holding these companies back from going online.
The team supports the customers throughout their e-commerce journey, from optimising search and marketing on social media, to dealing with transactions.
“This has been a significant differentiator in the markets we are in, and people really like our dedicated approach tailored to them,” Anurag declares.
Strategy and plans
Shopmatic is targeting a broad spectrum of users, from SMEs right down to sole proprietorships, which Anurag describes as including “people who give tuition or cooking classes.”
The company is currently looking to get its “numbers right” in the next six to 12 months. “Our success metrics is based on numbers, and being present in six different markets this year,” he says.
“We are developing a product roadmap that is more expansive, and will be in Hong Kong next month, and towards the end of the year, we’ve got Indonesia and Philippines under consideration,” he adds.
Shopmatic is currently privately funded but is “in the middle of raising a bridge round from angel and institutional investors,” says Anurag, declining to identify these parties or how much it is looking to raise.
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