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Delivery is (Still) the Main Issue for Indonesian E-Commerce

Adjie Priambada - 10 February 2015

The vast growth of e-commerce in Indonesia has eased the practice of online shopping. Even so, a number of issues remain exist. Based on this fact, I tried investigating giant e-commerce’s Facebook page and Twitter account to figure out the issue that costumers experience when they shop online.

If you ask me why bother doing the investigation, then my response would be because I myself had experienced such inconvenience while shopping online. When my ordered item, for instance, was actually out of stock although the seller stated that there was still one left. Fortunately, the e-commerce provider gave me satisfying customer service and the item was finally sent.

This time, I involved three e-commerce providers with similar sales model through their Facebook and Twitter official accounts. The result was predictable. The main issue that I found was about delivery services. Out of 30 consumers who commented on the providers’ Facebook or Twitter pages, 11 people complained about how their ordered items didn’t arrive at their destined location on time, some even took weeks to finally be received.

The order status issue was ranked second on my list. Consumers complained that their order status remained the same even after they finished the payment process with no response at all. This made their ordered items reached them in a long, long time.

It seems that e-commerce players in Indonesia still prefer local delivery service providers which have yet treated orders coming from e-commerce as a special case. The cheaper tariff, compared to services from foreign providers who have supported special treatment for orders from e-commerce, undoubtedly becomes the main determinant of such trend. Although it places consumers as the victim, but e-commerce providers aren’t one to be blamed, since they only want to do business.

Besides the delivery, other issues like payment system, item conformity, and stock status updates should also be taken into consideration, as they really affect customers’ trust towards the services being offered.

I do expect that e-commerce players in Indonesia can be much better in the future. Indonesia is indeed a challenging developing market which isn’t that simple to be conquered. Thus, it would be wiser for local delivery service providers to synergize their services with the way e-commerce works.

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