Empower MSMEs Today Towards Digital Adoption
As a sector that enables the vital movement of goods and products from one place to another, logistics has always been an indispensable part of the Philippine economy.
However, it has faced many challenges over the past year due to restricted movement of goods, manufacturing delays and declining imports, which are direct impacts of the pandemic. The industry’s otherwise rapid growth has been hampered, but luckily the e-commerce boom has brought it back to life.
E-commerce has grown in popularity in the country as more and more people have chosen to shop online for their security and convenience. iPrice reported a 53% increase in shopping app use by Filipinos and a 57% increase in online spending in the first half of 2020 compared to the same period a year earlier.
On the flip side, over 73% of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) were forced to shut down when the lockdown was implemented, and those that continued to operate saw a significant drop in their business. sales and income according to a survey by the Asian Development Bank.
For the MSME sector, embarking on e-commerce is an opportunity to embrace digital transformation and innovation in order to grow and serve their customers in the midst of the crisis.
Logistics in e-commerce
Logistics is the backbone of e-commerce. Without a strong logistics network in which to operate, the e-commerce business would lag behind.
In a report, Ken Research predicted that the Philippine e-commerce logistics market will continue to experience substantial growth in the future due to the shift from offline sales to online sales, and will evolve with new technologies to increase l efficiency, improve the customer experience and improve quality of service.
Logistics also play a key role in connecting buyers and consumers. Because of this, courier companies and logistics providers are forced to think of innovative ways to serve two stakeholders that are critical to the success of the industry.
The rapid growth of e-commerce during a pandemic has called for more emphasis on security. At Ninja Van Philippines, technology is fully utilized through the implementation of contactless pickups and deliveries. This ensures that our customers and passengers are safe from the potential health risks associated with the pandemic. Embracing technology has allowed us to aggressively tackle the challenges of the crisis while ensuring that we take care of our employees, salespeople and customers.
We have also seen the need for faster and more transparent communications to ensure that our stakeholders feel they can receive our support quickly.
At the start of the lockdown, many of our shippers identified funding as an immediate need to grow their businesses given the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. Most online businesses have been challenged by the implementation of the Enhanced Community Quarantine in March 2020, which restricted non-essential e-commerce activities.
In response, we have strengthened our service, COD Advance, which allows online sellers to collect their COD (cash on delivery) payments the day after their parcels are picked up. In addition to prompt disbursement of payments, the service also offers zero interest rates, no guarantees and no lock-in period required for MSMEs who decide to use it.
In addition, Ninja Van invests heavily in providing MSMEs with services and tools to facilitate their e-commerce process.
Besides COD Advance, we also have services like Ninja Direct which allow sellers to import goods from China and Thailand, and even local places like Divisoria to explore new ways to grow their business. We are also committed to providing useful business information through our Ninja Blog as well as community initiatives such as the Ninja Van Philippines Masterclass and Online Bazaars that aim to feed MSMEs.
Recognizing the importance of MSMEs in the economic development of the country, we aim to help them go above and beyond through our service and speed. By providing them with the logistical support they need and a wide range of services to ensure easy digital adoption, we aim to help them get back on their feet and be empowered to face the ever-changing logistics landscape of e-commerce. —FIVE CONTRIBUTED
Martin Cu is the Country Chef of Ninja Van Philippines.
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