Online business registrations climbed by more than 350 percent as of March 15 this year on the back of the exponential growth of electronic commerce, data from the Department of Trade and Industry show.
The DTI said online business registrations increased to 7,525 as of March 15 from 1,642 registered in the same period last year.
The new online registration data represented about 8.5 percent of total online registrations in 2020 of 88,574. Total registrations including online jumped 48.69 percent last year to 916,163 from 637,577 in 2019.
“Most consumers are now opting for online retail shopping, instead of going to physical stores for fear of infection. We have seen the constant rise of online transactions over the last several years,” said DTI Undersecretary for consumer protection group Ruth Castelo.
The trend is expected to continue in 2021 and beyond as the Philippine market advanced quickly to the digitalization, she said.
Castelo said the increase in online shoppers was accompanied by the growth in the number of registered online businesses.
“We just really hope that these online businesses will respect and fulfill their obligation to consumers to deliver exactly what is purchased and to make sure that they have an effective after sales service provided,” she said.
The DTI, with the assistance from industry stakeholders, is updating the Philippine E-commerce Roadmap.
Efforts to update the roadmap started in August 2020, with Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez highlighting the need to “build trust between online sellers and online consumers”.”
The goal, he said, is to increase the understanding of micro, small and medium enterprises on e-commerce and introduce them to enablers and platforms that would expand their marketing channels from traditional brick-and-mortar stores into digital transactions.
Lopez cited the huge opportunity for Philippine businesses on the online platform.
Digital or e-commerce is a prime mover for the continued increase of Philippine total retail sale which reached $80 billion. Of this, e-commerce accounted for less than 5 percent of retail sales or about $4 billion.