SHOPLINE has a simple mission: to empower merchants to succeed everywhere. Since 2013, the Hong-Kong headquartered ‘smart commerce platform’ has enabled over 250,000 businesses across Asia to take advantage of the ecommerce opportunity and quickly start selling goods and services online.
But SHOPLINE is only at the beginning of its journey. The company is laser-focused on growth and has aggressive plans to expand further deeper into the region. It’s already opened offices in key South Eastern Asian cities like Bangkok, Ho Chi Minh City and Kuala Lumpur to take advantage of the rapid growth of ecommerce in South East Asia — a market set to be worth over $170 billion by 2025.
The team at SHOPLINE is continually innovating to provide merchants with a world-leading out-of-the-box eCommerce solution. This includes payments. And SHOPLINE is leveraging our best-in-class payments technology to provide even more value to its merchants.
Our VP of Customer Success, Christy Fung, caught up with SHOPLINE Co-founder and Chief Operating Officer, Fiona Lau, to learn more about its growth plans and why payments are central to its offering to merchants, and why they’ve chosen to work with us.
Christy Fung: SHOPLINE recently launched its own payments platform for merchants. Why the focus on payments, and how do you hope this new offering will bring value to SHOPLINE and its 250,000 merchants?
Fiona Lau: Payments power ecommerce. And if we want to be offering a full end-to-end solution for our merchants, then payments absolutely have to be part of that. That’s why we developed a fully integrated and competitive payments platform to be part of our core offering to our merchants.
We believe this will be transformative for our merchants, many of whom are small and medium-sized businesses that often find payments to be a pain point. And this is because payments are often disconnected from all their other processes. They struggle to reconcile accurately, deal with refunds, understand whether they’re paying a fair price for payments, and get the support they need from their providers. But by offering payments as part of our overall ecommerce offering, we solve all those challenges for merchants, saving them time, money, and effort to invest in their core business.
Christy Fung: How did you first learn about Checkout.com and why did you decide to partner with us?
Fiona Lau: Checkout.com is one of the most prominent payment service providers globally. We at SHOPLINE, like most people working in ecommerce, have known about you and your value proposition for a long time. And when we started thinking about building our own payments platform, Checkout.com was first on our list of providers to support us on our journey.
There are several reasons why. Firstly, your local presence in our key markets and deep understanding of payments in the region is of significant value. Not only does it mean we have people we can call upon when we need assistance or have questions, but it’s also allowing us to win more business by ensuring we’re catering to the needs of our merchants.
For instance, we initially thought our merchants would only need to accept Visa and MasterCard. But your team worked with us to conduct some analysis and highlighted other forms of payment, like American Express, that play an important role in the business of merchants too.
But what sets you apart is that you didn’t only uncover the problem for us, you solved it for us quicker than we ever expected. Within a week of our first discussion, you’d enabled American Express on our platform so we could offer it as an option to our merchants.
This is a testament to the flexible, problem-solving mindset that the people who work at Checkout.com bring to the table. And it’s also down to the modularity and simplicity of their solution, which allows us to build the payments solution that’s right for us and our merchants in markets across the Asia Pacific.
Lastly, we decided to work with you because of the value you offer today and what you will allow us to provide in the years to come. We want to continue providing added value to our merchants by enabling them to get a deeper understanding of their payments data to grow their business. And Checkout.com, with its laser focus on unlocking payments data, is the payments provider that will allow us to achieve our ambitions.
Christy Fung: What success have you had since launching your payments platform?
Fiona Lau: Over 500 merchants applied to use our payments platform in the first month, and many more are applying every day. The early success has exceeded our expectations. The merchants we’ve spoken with are delighted with the user functionality and the ability to integrate payments into their end-to-end process flow. It’s making their lives easier and allowing them to focus on what they do best.
Christy Fung: What are your plans for 2021, and how do payments fit into those?
Fiona Lau: We’re focused on expanding into new markets and deepening our presence in those markets we are already in. That’s the main focus. And the payments platform that we’ve built for our merchants is core to our strategy. And throughout 2021, we’ll be working with the team at Checkout.com to localize our payments offering to develop solutions that deliver a seamless experience for our merchants across Asia.