Feb 5, 2013

Posted by in Featured, Shopping | 0 Comments

Online Shopping Singapore Guides. Tips for Singapore Online Shopping

As far as I can recall, Singapore is never short of irony. At the beginning, Singapore was regarded no more than just a tiny red dot but yet we have come far to become one of the most developed nation. We have been crowned the richest nation in the world (with the highest GDP) but yet Singaporeans are the unhappiest people on earth. Singapore has one of the highest broadband penetration in the world (>100%) but when it comes to average Internet connection speed, Singapore is on the 32nd spot globally according to Akamai’s latest State of the Internet report. The irony of the Singapore’s digital landscape does not end there. I found it amusing and incomprehendable that despite the existence of broadband connection in every household, the online shopping Singapore adoption rate is pathetic.

If you look at a not so recent report from a study commissioned by Paypal, you would think that Singapore online shopping is thriving. The report states that Singapore online shopping market hit the $1.1B mark back in 2010. According to the report, the Singapore online shopping market is projected to grow to $4.4B in 2015. I’m not sure how does it translate to the reality of Singapore online shopping trend. Based on my conversation with friends, colleagues and relatives, it seems that there are still relatively small number of people who are comfortable with online shopping in Singapore. I heard many doubts. I answered many questions. And I received many requests to write a beginner’s guide to doing online shopping Singapore. This article serves as a beginner’s guide and if you are well ahead into the online shopping game, then this might not be for you.

First of all, when we talk about online shopping sites, we need to be clear of one thing. We need to be clear if we are talking about local (Singapore online shop) or International sites. This is important because shopping from a Singapore online shop is totally a different matter compared to shopping from a global e-tailer (or non-Singapore online shop). The methods of payment may also be different.


Let us begin by looking at the list of Singapore online shopping sites. While there are new blogshops popping up every once in a while, I have yet to take them seriously when I shop online in Singapore. The reason is simple. I’m not trying to discourage the brave young entrepreneurs who pull the courage to set up their own blog shops. In fact, I very much would like to see more successful blog shops in Singapore. But for now, I will just list few of the established Singapore online shopping sites.

  • Qoo10: This is by far what I see as the most popular online shopping Singapore site. In case you found it alien, Qoo10 is renamed after Gmarket. The items being sold there are generally cheaper than the retail price that you normally have to pay. This, in my opinion, is the biggest draw the site has to offer. Apart from the large collection of items (from clothes to kitchenware to fashion accessories), the site offers 5 different method of payments that you can choose from. You can choose to use your PayPal (if you have one) account, Credit Card (if you feel it is secure to do so), Cash transfer, e-Nets (I’m sure you have an Internet Banking account) or QAaccount.
  • Reebonz: Some of you might have heard of this online shopping Singapore site while some of you might not. Reebonz operates based on flash sale model. Flash sale is a kind of e-commerce model that has gained popularity in recent times. In brief, a flash sale site usually offers a limited range of products for a limited period of time. In US, the biggest flash sale site is Gilt. While Reebonz and Gilt operate on similar sales model, I still find prices offered by Reebonz to be too high for such model. If you are into designer handbags, clothes, watches and shoes, Reebonz is where you want to head on to. The site allows you to pay using either Paypal or Credit Card.
  • NutritionPark: If you are looking for an online shop in Singapore that sells vitamins and health supplements, this is where I would recommend. The site might be bare and simple, but I found them to be reliable. In addition, their prices are usually lower than the retail prices you find in retail stores. They accept PayPal and Credit Card as payment method.
  • Zalora: They are the newest entrant into the Singapore online shop scene. Although they are new to the online shopping Singapore scene, I can see that they are well funded. Immediately after their launch in 2012, they embarked on aggressive marketing push. I’m sure in one way or another, you would have come across their banners at least once in the past 6 months alone. Whether you are stalking your friends in Facebook or you are googling for something or checking your Yahoo email, there is a high chance that you have come across their ads at least once. The biggest draw that Zalora has to offer is the Cash on delivery payment in addition to the usual PayPal and Credit Card options. They are also offering a Free 30-days return. Personally, I have not tried making any purchase from them before, so I reserve my comment for now.
  • WhyMobile: If you are into mobile phones and tablets, this is the site you want to bookmark and remember. If you need to check on the latest prices of any new mobile phone models, this is the place. They take in eNets or Credit Card as payment method.

That is all for this edition of Online Shopping Singapore Guides for newbies. I’ve shortlisted 5 Singapore Online shopping sites that should fulfill almost all your basic shopping needs. What do you think? Let me know your thoughts in the comment below.

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