Social Commerce: The Lifeline of Singapore SMEs

At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, SMEs were faced with challenges in digital adoption. Many lacked technical expertise or did not know how to move sales operations to online marketplaces like Shopee and Lazada to survive. 

Thanks to social media, these previously lagging businesses were able to sell products online. Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok are the biggest social media platforms that SMEs and large corporations use to boost sales through this persistent pandemic, according to a PayPal survey conducted in Singapore.

Today, social media is the preferred online sales channel by SMEs, with 53% of those surveyed using it to sell products due to their ease of use (53%), low cost (44%), and low maintenance (47%).

The survey projected that the global market for social commerce could reach a revised size of US$ 2.9 Trillion by 2026. The survey also revealed that 43% of online SMEs did not see a negative impact from the pandemic, as Singapore consumers preferred digital payment methods since the start of COVID-19.

About 81% of SMEs surveyed are engaged or plan to engage in cross-border trade. Meanwhile, 78% are considering investing in offering other options for shopper convenience.