Bangkok, recently crowned the Facebook capital due to having the most users, is attracting companies from a wide variety of sectors to launch their online products and services to reach more customers around the clock.
Industry experts believe this will boost the value of online shopping in Thailand to 75 billion baht this year and 100 billion baht annually over the next three years.
Retail players already providing online shopping include Central Department Store, The Mall Group and Tops Supermarket and Singha Corporation.
The latest offering comes from Big C Supercenter Plc, which yesterday introduced a full-scale online shopping site.
Kudatara Nagaviroj, Big C's director of corporate affair, said Big C Online Shopping is aimed at responding to today's digital consumer lifestyles.
More and more customers are making online purchases via their computers or smartphones, he said.
Company research found new-generation customers have limited time and want a convenient, reliable and cost-efficient way to shop.
Initially, the Big C Mobile Shopping app will run on the iOS and Android operating systems, which together have 13 million users in the country, with the number rising quickly.
Big C has offered a limited online shopping service through its website and call centre for three years now.
The number of visits to the online shopping website and sales volume have surged recently.
Homepage visits have increased by 46% and sales volume by 410%, while more than 71,000 people have clicked Like on the Facebook fanpage.
"We believe this is the right time to take online shopping to the next level by introducing the mobile app to satisfy customer demand," said Mr Kudatara.
He said a QR code allows customers to access and review products and make their purchases in very little time.
The Big C mobile app carries more than 10,000 items from dry foods and other groceries to health and beauty products, clothing and apparel, and home and electronic appliances.
All items cost the same as in an actual Big C store with the same promotions.
Online customers can pick up products and pay at 112 stores or use the free delivery service for orders of more than 1,500 baht in selected cities.
Big C now offers this service in Bangkok, with 85% of online customers taking advantage of it. The service will be expanded to Khon Kaen, Udon Thani, Pattaya and Chon Buri next.
Meanwhile, Tesco Lotus, its arch rival in the hypermarket industry, will introduce its own online shopping service in the fourth quarter.
Customers will be able to order both fresh and dry groceries through an easy-to-use internet interface and have them delivered to their homes.
A QR code and mobile app will be used.
About the author
- Writer: Pitsinee Jitpleecheep
Position: Business Reporter