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According to KPMG, Seamless Retail Establishes New Benchmarks in the Asia Pacific

ByYasmeeta Oon

Jun 6, 2024
According to KPMG, Seamless Retail Establishes New Benchmarks in the Asia Pacific

According to KPMG, Seamless Retail Establishes New Benchmarks in the Asia Pacific

KPMG‘s latest study, titled ‘Navigating the Future of Seamless Commerce in Asia Pacific,’ provides a comprehensive analysis of the retail sector’s ongoing transformation across the region. This transformation is predominantly driven by technological advancements, shifting the industry focus from traditional retail strategies to a more integrated, customer-centric approach. Collaborating with GS1, the study delves into how retailers are utilizing technology and sustainability initiatives to significantly improve the consumer experience.

The study emphasizes that the evolution of retail is now centered around digital transformation. This shift is vital as it transitions the sector from multichannel and omnichannel strategies to seamless retail. Seamless retail, according to the report, is about unifying the customer experience across various platforms and services, which has become an essential expectation in the markets surveyed.

Anson Bailey, Head of Consumer & Retail for KPMG in Asia Pacific, highlighted the importance of this shift, stating, “Putting consumers first by adopting seamless, connected capabilities across the entire organization is not just a competitive edge but a necessity for those who want to lead the market.”

The report outlines several key trends that are redefining how consumers interact with brands and retailers. These insights are based on a survey of approximately 7,000 respondents from 14 different markets in the Asia Pacific region, including China, Hong Kong SAR, Taiwan, Australia, New Zealand, India, Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Vietnam. Additionally, the report reflects insights from interviews with senior C-suite-level executives from leading retailers, brands, and e-commerce marketplaces.

Key Trends Identified:
  • E-commerce Landscape: The e-commerce scene is characterized by intense competition with no single platform dominating the market. Consumers prioritize a broad selection of products and fast, reliable delivery.
  • Generation Z and Social Commerce: Platforms like TikTok are gaining significant traction among Generation Z. This demographic’s rapidly changing preferences are forcing brands to quickly adapt their supply chain strategies.
  • Use of Artificial Intelligence: AI is increasingly employed to enhance the relevance and accuracy of product recommendations, though this raises concerns about privacy and the diminishing role of human interaction in retail.
  • Digital Payments on the Rise: Digital wallets are popular in Southeast Asia, whereas more established markets like Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, and South Korea prefer traditional payment methods such as debit and credit cards. In China, Alipay remains a top choice.
  • Loyalty Programs and Data Collection: Loyalty programs are evolving beyond mere reward mechanisms to crucial tools for gathering consumer data, enhancing direct-to-consumer strategies.

One of the standout aspects of the report is its focus on sustainability. It stresses that sustainability should not be seen merely as a marketing strategy but needs to be integrated into the core values of a brand. This is especially true as Millennials and Generation Z are increasingly demanding transparency and genuine sustainability practices.

Patrik Jonasson, Senior Director of Global Retail at GS1, commented, “Product sustainability, supply chain transparency, and circularity are becoming central to overall business operations. Soon, ESG reporting will be indistinguishable from the need for a seamless exchange of trusted product data.”

The report also highlights how understanding these trends is crucial for retailers aiming to excel in the evolving market landscape, particularly as consumer spending patterns adjust in the post-pandemic era.

MarketPreferred Payment MethodKey Consumer Demand
Southeast AsiaDigital WalletsFast, Reliable Delivery
Australia, NZ, Singapore, S. KoreaDebit/Credit CardsProduct Variety
ChinaAlipaySeamless User Experience

The full ‘Navigating the Future of Seamless Commerce in Asia Pacific’ report is available for download at kpmg.com/ASPACseamlesscommerce, offering invaluable insights for businesses looking to thrive in this dynamically changing environment.


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Featured Image courtesy of DALL-E by ChatGPT

Yasmeeta Oon

Just a girl trying to break into the world of journalism, constantly on the hunt for the next big story to share.

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