Upgraded EasyStore ready to take on e-marketplace industry
By Lum Ka Kay July 14, 2016
- Double-digit monthly growth rate in terms of customer base
- EasyStore 2.0 launched in May, new features and subscription model
KUALA Lumpur-based e-commerce solutions provider EasyStore believes it has what it takes to set itself apart from the other players in a rather crowded industry.
Its chief technology officer Frost Chen declares that “fancy website builders” like WIX or Weebly are not suitable for most e-commerce sellers as their services and user interfaces are “not purposely designed” to serve the sellers.
“Unlike them, we are fully focused on e-commerce modules, including order and customer management and payment integration,” he says, speaking to Digital News Asia (DNA) via email recently.
“We are also the first [e-commerce solutions provider] platform that supports eight languages, as we believe language may be one of the many barriers for Asian sellers when setting up their online stores,” he adds.
Another differentiator is that unlike with most other online marketplaces or e-marketplaces, EasyStore users can get their own domain name, design and branding, Chen claims.
“There’s also more flexibility for EasyStore users when it comes to engaging with their customers or even selecting their marketing channels,” he adds.
Launched in 2013, EasyStore is an all-in-one e-commerce offering of regional webhosting and e-commerce solutions provider Exabytes Network Sdn Bhd.
According to Chen, Exabytes has invested over RM3 million (US$750,000) into EasyStore so far, and he claims that the business could have been profitable already.
“We have chosen not to be profitable by lowering the price of our services and reinvesting a significant amount of our capital into R&D (research and development),” he adds.
Online store ≠ physical store
One challenge in growing EasyStore’s business is that sellers still see online stores as being analogous to physical stores.
“They still see e-marketplaces the same way they see physical stores, leading them to limit their online presence by sticking to just one or two e-marketplaces,” says Chen (pic).
“But in the online world, sellers shouldn’t limit themselves to selling in just one or two places. They’re allowed to sell in multiple places, besides owning a physical store.
“More education is needed to shift sellers’ mindset on this,” he adds.
Furthermore, many sellers are “trapped” in the price wars and high transaction fees of traditional online marketplaces.
“We see an unhealthy cycle in today’s e-marketplace industry. These platforms are not well-designed for growing your business brand and building loyal customers,” Chen argues.
“We even have users who refused to sell their products in e-marketplaces because of the price wars and high transaction fees – but we encourage our existing users to remain in these marketplaces as it would help boost their online presence,” he adds.
According to Chen, EasyStore has been recording a “double-digit” monthly growth rate in terms of customer base.
“We have had over 6,000 users signing up for our free trial service every month since we launched an upgraded version of EasyStore earlier in May,” he says.
With EasyStore 2.0, the company also made a pivot in its business model from an annual subscription to a monthly subscription model, which Chen believes would make it more affordable for e-commerce sellers.
Monthly subscriptions for EasyStore’s e-commerce solutions start from RM39 (US$9.81).
“We also introduced Apps and Themes stores which will help them integrate new services, apps and designs into their online store,” he says.
“And we have upgraded our infrastructure to Amazon Web Services (AWS) so that we are more prepared to handle users at a larger scale,” he adds.
EasyStore will continue to integrate more useful applications for its sellers across South-East Asia, says Chen.
“We target to integrate more than 100 applications and more than 50 payment gateways by the end of this year,” he adds.
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