KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA - Media OutReach - 12 February 2020 - Southeast Asia's $100bn online economy is booming - experts predict massive growth to a staggering $300bn by 2025. Reason enough for retailers of all categories to increase their online efforts, including flower shops. With Valentine's Day just around the corner, florists across the region are witnessing the growth of the online economy firsthand.
Flower Chimp is one of the notable companies riding on the e-commerce wave. Operating in five markets, they have not only studied their customers closely during these three years, but also shared insights on how Malaysian Valentine's Day habits differ from their neighbouring countries in the region. For instance, Malaysians spend on average around RM180 on their Valentine's gift - that's 10% below the region's average. Spending less doesn't mean that Malaysians are not serious about their Valentines - the opposite is the case, as they are true early birds when it comes to gifting. Many Malaysians already start buying their Valentine's gifts a month in advance - this is only surpassed by the Philippines, where people start ordering their Valentine's gifts as early as December.
To cope with the increased demand, online florists must undertake extensive preparations. Flower Chimp for example has recently moved into its new 10k sqf fulfilment center, where more than 200 people are making sure that all orders are delivered on time. While most of the staff are trained florists, such a fulfilment center has only little in common with a normal florist shop. With massive cooling rooms and shelf space to stock up thousands of bouquets, it rather resembles an Amazon facility than a local neighbourhood florist.
While such preparations might seem excessive for a single day, one must keep in mind that celebrations occur not only once a year. Mother's Day, Hari Raya, and many more festive seasons provide Malaysians with plenty of reasons to spoil their loved ones more than once a year, and online gifting services have made it a lot more convenient to do so.
Authors: Media Outreach