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Success Tips How to Expand Your Brand to Malaysia E-commerce

by | Apr 6, 2024 | Market Entry

Overview of Malaysia E-commerce Market

The Malaysian e-commerce market has seen exponential growth in the last few years. It is one of the fastest-growing economies in the Southeast Asian region, with a projected revenue of 10.19 billion USD in 2023. Since the country has many active internet and social media users, the chances of growth are also expanding. 

The e-commerce Malaysia market is slowly overtaking the traditional markets as well, especially with the growing interest of teenagers in online shopping. The sudden surge of users is also partially due to the pandemic in 2020, which led to more and more people depending on online marketing. You can find everything you need about e-commerce in Malaysia and its business prospects in this article. 

Malaysian Consumers and Online Shopping Habits

Quite a few recent trends have been developed, impacting e-commerce in Malaysia. Here are some habits of Malaysian consumers.

1. Internet Penetration in Malaysia

The internet penetration rate of Malaysia is one of the highest in Southeast Asia. In 2023, 96.8% of all Malaysian citizens are active Internet users. This has led to Malaysia’s online market becoming more affluent as people from all over the country prefer the comfort of shopping from their homes.

2. Social Media Users in Malaysia and Their Influence on Shopping Habits

Social media greatly impact the online spending habits of people. With promotional ads on social media, consumers tend to buy products that showcase on their feeds. Almost 99.8% of all Malaysian adults use some form of social media, which is still on the rise. This has led to an increase in online shoppers in the country. 

3. The Annual Growth Rate of Online Shopping in Malaysia

The state of the e-commerce market in Malaysia is better than ever before. Every year, millions of new people join the online shopping trend, and it has become the most popular choice for young people. The CAGR of e-commerce in Malaysia is expected to be 13.6% from 2023-2027, making it one of the most affluent e-commerce markets. 

4. Number of Online Shoppers in Malaysia Compared to Brick-and-Mortar Stores

Even though the physical shops reopened after the pandemic, most Malaysians preferred shopping online. Many consumers who began shopping online during the pandemic still do it because of the added convenience of doorstep delivery and digital payment options. 

5. The Attractiveness of the Malaysian Market to International Retailers and Brands

The Malaysian market offers lucrative business opportunities to international brands and retailers. Foreign investment is the driving force behind most of the popular online shopping sites in the country. With great support from the government and a growing market where demand is growing rapidly, it is one of the best times for foreign retailers to invest in the e-commerce market of Malaysia. 

Online Shopping Trends in Malaysia

As online shopping is becoming more popular amongst Malaysian citizens, a few trends can be observed among consumers. 

Growing Economy

Malaysia’s economy is booming right now. The GDP of Malaysia is predicted to reach a height of $634.98 billion in 2028. A growing economy makes more consumers willing to buy things from online marketplaces. 

Same-day Delivery 

A lot of consumers in Malaysia shop online because of its convenience. With same-day delivery, the products they ordered can reach them within 24 hours. Companies that offer same-day delivery to customers are more likely to succeed in Malaysia e-commerce market. 

Digital Payment Methods 

It is also apparent that many internet users in Malaysia, especially the younger generation, prefer digital payment methods. Most e-commerce companies offer online payment options which are fast and secure. 

Quality of Products

Price is an important factor in the e-commerce industry of Malaysia. But, consumers are more interested in high-quality products over lowered prices. 

Flexible Consumers 

Malaysian consumers are also flexible while trying out new items. They will be more interested in compelling and new products. 

Shopping on Phone 

Most e-commerce customers in Malaysia use their mobile devices to shop online. Optimizing apps and websites for phones is crucial for a business to succeed in the country. 

Cross Border E-commerce Opportunities in Malaysia

There are a lot of e-commerce trends and opportunities in Malaysia for new businesses. With a multicultural population and a growing economy, Malaysia is a great country to expand your online business. But there are a few pros and cons of expanding your business in Malaysia, which we will talk about. 

Advantages for Companies Selling Products Cross-border into the Malaysian Market

Here are some of the advantages of expanding your online business in Malaysia:

  1. Market Size

The main advantage of expanding a business in Malaysia is its population. The country boasts a 32.7 million population, most of whom have disposable income. Malaysia has no great cultural barriers, as people there live in harmony. It has a massive market with great growth potential. New businesses that want to expand there will also find lucrative opportunities. 

  1. Infrastructure

Malaysia also has great infrastructure and convenient logistical options for businesses. The logistics cost is low there, which means increased profit for businesses. 

  1. Government Policies

The government of Malaysia offers great support and opportunities for global businesses looking to expand in the country. Many tax reductions and other open policies can ease establishing a business in the country. 

Challenges Companies May Face When Setting Up Cross-border E-commerce Platforms in Malaysia

There are also some challenges companies may have to face while trying to expand in Malaysia’s e-commerce market: 

  1. Warehousing and Transportation

Warehouse operations and management can be quite difficult for new businesses in Malaysia. Since Malaysian consumers expect same-day delivery for most products, it can be hard for new businesses to keep up with customer demand without proper warehouse management and transportation options. Logistics costs are also high in Malaysia, which can harm small businesses.

  1. Cybersecurity Issues

Cybersecurity threats and fraud are also big problems for e-commerce companies in Malaysia. If the customer data is safe, it will be easy for consumers to trust the company again. 

How to Succeed in the Malaysian E-commerce Market?

Succeeding in the Malaysian e-commerce market requires a thorough understanding of the local landscape, consumer behavior, and market trends. Here are some key strategies to help you thrive in this market:

1. Understand the Local Market

Conduct thorough market research to understand the preferences, purchasing behavior, and cultural nuances of Malaysian consumers. Consider factors such as language, payment preferences, and popular product categories.

2. Mobile Optimization

Malaysia has a high rate of smartphone penetration, and many consumers prefer to shop online via mobile devices. Ensure that your e-commerce platform is optimized for mobile users to provide a seamless shopping experience.

3. Localization

Tailor your website, product descriptions, and marketing content to resonate with Malaysian consumers. This includes using local language, currency, and imagery that reflects the cultural context.

4. Multiple Payment Options

Provide diverse payment options to cater to the preferences of Malaysian shoppers. This may include credit/debit cards, e-wallets like GrabPay and Boost, online banking, and cash on delivery (COD).

5. Logistics and Fulfillment

Partner with reliable logistics providers to ensure timely delivery of orders across Malaysia. Efficient fulfillment processes and transparent shipping options can enhance customer satisfaction and loyalty.

6. Customer Service

Offer excellent customer service to build trust and credibility with Malaysian shoppers. Provide multiple channels for customer support, including live chat, email, and phone support, and be responsive to inquiries and concerns.

7. Local Partnerships and Marketing

Collaborate with local influencers, bloggers, and businesses to expand your reach and tap into established networks. Utilize social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter for targeted marketing campaigns.

8. Adaptation to Cultural Festivals

Take advantage of major cultural festivals and holidays in Malaysia, such as Ramadan, Chinese New Year, and Hari Raya, by offering special promotions, discounts, and themed marketing campaigns.

9. Data Analytics and Optimization

Continuously analyze customer data, website metrics, and sales performance to identify trends, optimize marketing strategies, and improve the overall shopping experience.

10. Legal and Regulatory Compliance

Familiarize yourself with e-commerce regulations and compliance requirements in Malaysia, including consumer protection laws, data privacy regulations, and taxation policies.

Expand Your Brand to Malaysia E-commerce with AsiaCommerce

If you are looking for a reliable partner to expand your brand to Malaysia, AsiaCommerce is a procurement company that provides several services such as comprehensive market research, arranging partnerships in local industry, and creating sales programs based on market research.

Our strategy consulting services domain focuses on supporting private sector clients with comprehensive and specialized development regarding the company’s needs and also on the public sector for a broader scope.
If you’re interested in exploring market opportunities in Indonesia, visit our service page for more information. Our team will work with you every step of the way, from finding a supplier, shipping door-to-door, and handling import documents to ensure your market entry to Indonesia.


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