Business, E-commerce, Lazada, Shopee

So you opened your eCommerce business some years ago and found great success!

One thought that came across your mind would be to start selling to different countries and regions you know your competitors have hardly touched yet.

But there are too many unknowns that are keeping you from making the move.

So if you are selling outside of Malaysia or Southeast Asia, and are thinking of expanding your business to these places, then this guide might provide you with some ideas on how you can start cross-border selling to Malaysia!

  • Leveraging Online Marketplaces
  • Leveraging 3rd Party Logistics Companies
  • Leveraging Local Service Providers

How To Start Cross-Border Selling To Malaysia

Leveraging Local Online Marketplaces

Rather than going through the process of finding and vetting suitable distributors, a quick way to get started selling in Malaysia is to use their online marketplaces.

Similar to platforms like Amazon, these marketplaces help you list your products quickly to test the market.

You can view a list of Malaysian marketplaces here.

We recommend starting with the two biggest platforms, which are Shopee and Lazada.

Shopee and Lazada have had more funding and growth than the other marketplaces.

And they hold the majority of the market for online e-commerce in Malaysia.

Not only that, Shopee and Lazada both have special features that help businesses with developed brands stand out more on their platforms.

So you can quickly get traffic to your store on their platforms.

That said, Shopee and Lazada are slightly different in how they work.

If you want to quickly understand how each of them works in-depth, then you can check out the guide we prepared for both platforms when you click the links below.

Guide To Selling On Shopee

Guide To Selling On Lazada

What You Will Need To Prepare To Set Up Shop Quickly

Like most platforms and websites, you will need the following to get started.

  • Brand name
  • Brand logo
  • Product names
  • Product images
  • Product descriptions

If you have already been selling online either through platforms like Amazon or your own website, then you may already have these ready.

Now you just need to upload them to any of the platforms that you want to use.

You may need to localise some of your products based on how the local culture understands them.

Think chips (USA) vs crisps (UK).

Some words may have different meanings than what you are used to.

There are some extra features on Shopee and Lazada where you will be able to design a storefront on their platforms.

Though you don’t need to have it when you are getting started, it helps a lot to have your storefronts ready to show that your brand is authentic to potential buyers.

Leveraging Local 3rd Party Logistics (3PL) Companies

Alright, now that we have products listed on a platform or two, we need to go over distribution.

Your local 3rd Party Logistics (3PL) company may or may not be active in Malaysia.

So to help you out, we created a list of 3PL companies in Malaysia here.

Cross-Border Selling To Malaysia - List Of Logistics Companies In Malaysia

Within the list, you can find details of 3PL companies in Malaysia such as:

  • Tracking
  • Local/Domestic Deliveries
  • Business-to-Customer delivery (B2C) Delivery
  • Customer-to-Customer (C2C) Delivery
  • Delivery to South East Asian (SEA) Countries
  • Freight Services
  • Warehousing

One thing we did not mention in the article however was that Lazada and Shopee themselves have their own logistics and warehousing services.

The details of them are different and long, so we won’t be able to fit them into this article.

However, many brands outside of Malaysia that are looking to sell here typically use these services first, as a quick way to get started.

So this is another reason we recommend using these two platforms if you are looking to start selling in Malaysia fast.

What You Need To Consider When Using 3PL Companies

There are many things to consider when using 3PL companies.

Both from them, and your products.

Typically, you will need to keep these in mind:

  • 3PL prices
  • Range of 3PL services
  • 3PL operating days
  • Factors that can break/ruin your product
  • Environmental factors that may affect services
  • Local major sale days (like Black Friday)

Unfortunately, there are too many things to list down, as well as things that are niche specific.

Our advice would be to look at your current contracts with 3PL providers and reach out to Malaysian 3PL providers to see if you are able to come to a similar deal.

Leveraging Local Service Providers

Setting up an online shop on these platforms is easy, however, we also know that it can be a huge time sink.

Especially if you have hundreds of products to list!

So why not use local service providers who have already learned the platforms to save yourself time and effort?

If you are looking to set up shop, localise your media assets, and keep your stores managed, then it would save you a lot of time and money to use services like Red Dino.

And as the pioneer for these marketplace management services in Malaysia, we have also built a strong rapport with the two biggest marketplaces, Shopee and Lazada.

Based on our experience, some brands will encounter unique problems that require long-term communications with a sales representative from the marketplace and your team.

Due to your daily operations and the difference in time zones, it is usually a pain to juggle these things.

So we are able to help solve your store’s issues as your liaison and your store managers, freeing up your time to focus on other parts of your business.

Start Selling To Malaysia Today

Now you have the basic information you need to get started selling cross-border in Malaysia.

If you are interested to start getting your stores up and running on Shopee or Lazada, then get in touch with us by clicking here.



May 2024


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