The number of
social media users in Asia are expected to surpass the one billion mark by next year, and platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and
WhatsApp are becoming more than just places to network.
have become profitable marketplaces not just for merchants who sell items, but
also for individuals who are looking to make some extra cash with advertising
their goods or services.
And it is millennials who appear to be
charging forward in the form of commerce called social commerce or s-commerce.
Essentially, social commerce has
provided opportunities to individuals to become entrepreneurs without the risk
of traditional retail models.
Social commerce is especially unique since
it allows for peer reviews and recommendations to take a central role when it
comes to customer decision making.
According to the Electronics
Transaction Development Agency (ETDA), Thai people spend an average of
3.5 hours per day on social media; the top three social media platforms are
YouTube, Facebook, and Line.
E-commerce in Thailand is an ever-growing area
and it is expected that by 2020 about 84
per cent of Thai population or 59
million people will have access to the Internet. The Thai people are
among the highest users of mobile Internet, averaging 4.3
hours per day.
The numbers tell the story. In May 2018
alone, people shared more than 17 billion
photos, and 400 million
people use voice and video chat on Facebook. Meanwhile, as of April 2018, more
than 150 million
Instagrammers were connecting with businesses each month. And one in
three of these conversations generally begins with an Instagram story.
The growing popularity of messaging has
created opportunities for businesses of all sizes. From using immersive visuals
to establishing confidence and trust, messaging has the unique potential to
draw people and businesses together into an ongoing conversation, ultimately
enabling even more meaningful connections.
Much of the social shopping scene is
populated with small businesses, though numerous corporate retailers also have
social media accounts for online sales.
This unique way of conducting business in
Thailand has contributed to the ever expanding Thai economy. It has allowed for
small business to thrive and expand in the ever volatile retail sector in
Thailand and has created jobs for many Thai residents, especially those of
lower economic brackets, thus lowering the unemployment rate.
It is also in line with the Thai
government’s Smart Nation goals. Due to the growing success of social commerce,
more Thai citizens have been moving towards cashless payments and a cashless
The Bank of Thailand and many other banks
have also worked to create cashless payment methods. Thai citizens who are
participating heavily in social commerce are more willing to engage in these
new methods of cashless payments and have been using it even outside of social
Whilst still in its infancy stages, the
outlook on social commerce in Thailand is optimistic and is expected to
increase exponentially in the next few decades.