How to make Serious Money on Shopee so you can quit your 9-5 [Chills 168]

Discover the secrets of highly successful Shopee sellers as they reveal their strategies for building thriving e-commerce businesses

As e-commerce platforms continue innovating to attract more buyers and sellers, we dug deeper to understand what really works beyond promotional gimmicks.

Our guests today are veterans who’ve navigated the industry’s highs and lows. Seasoned sellers Xingcheng, Bing Rong, Keane offered a candid look behind the curtain at what it really takes to win on one of Singapore’s hottest e-commerce platforms.

Guests & Top Shopee Sellers:

  • Xingcheng Lim, Founder of SGDarts, a leading darts equipment seller on Shopee for nearly a decade
  • Tng Bing Rong, COO at Theo10, and appointed Shopee Seller Mentor for his ability to quickly adapt to new policies and tools, enabling him to effectively guide new sellers.
  • Keane, Founder of Dinky Shop

The discussion provided invaluable lessons for newcomers. Through first-hand experiences, these merchants cut through common misconceptions to share their tried-and-tested social selling strategies.

Here are 3 key takeaways we uncovered:

  1. Focus on quality over quantity

    When entering unfamiliar categories like baby products, Kin and Leon leveraged humor in videos and photos to authentically connect. “We work with influencers that have real followers engaged in comments,” noted Kin. Quality over quantity yielded loyal supporters, growing trust over time.

  2. Differentiate beyond price

    Despite competitors undercutting prices, Theo10 refused to compete on costs alone. Said Beng Rong, “We focused on building our brand outside platforms through influencer collaborations.” Their success proves intrinsic brand value triumphs temporary discounts.

  3. Utilise psychology in timing

    Off-peak periods like late nights yield impulse buyers. His livestreams between 12-1am gain traction from idle scrolling. Even public holidays stimulate sales when others rest. By understanding buyer mindsets, these merchants optimize opportunities outside crowd-focused events.

Early Stumbles & Lucky Breaks

The conversation began with each guest’s origin story of how they started selling on Shopee, often by unconventional means. Xingcheng recalled how Shopee’s early aggressive incentives and rebates lured him away from Carousell, where visibility was an issue.

For Keane, their baby products business quite literally began with a guru course prospect gone wrong. “We tried numerous things. I mean, we attended all the guru courses…what is the fast, easy way to become a millionaire, you see, and become successful overnight. So, did it work or not? Of course, it didn’t work,” Keane admitted candidly.

Their pivot to mother and baby items came about almost by chance after Keane noticed Jeju wet wipes were a top seller on Qoo10 when his partner’s wife was pregnant. Spotting the potential, they sourced a competing product and the rest was history.

Meanwhile, Bing Rong and his skincare company Theo10 were early Qoo10 adopters before being Selected as Shopee seller mentors for quickly grasping the platform’s tools and policies.

Should you be on 1 platform or multiple?

Xingcheng emphasised the importance of being present on multiple platforms initially to maximize exposure and sales potential. By establishing a strong presence across various platforms, sellers can leverage their success on one platform to support growth on others.

Tips for New Sellers to Stand Out

So what insider advice did these Shopee slayers have for new sellers looking to cut through the immense competition? Here are their top recommendations:

  1. Do Your Research

    As Bing Rong emphasised, “First I think you should research on what sells. Don’t take a white elephant and end up holding it because you will take your stock, your warehouse.”

  2. Price Competitively

    Xingcheng advised, “You must firstly undercut your existing competitors, at least by a few cents, then you can get the rating and also you’ll climb the ranks.”

  3. Prioritise Visuals

    Gone are the days of bland, generic listings. “Shopee standard is usually a white background, product in the center and top left, there’s a logo. Standardized, you look good and professional. But times have changed ah, so you need to stand out,” Xingcheng explained, suggesting using colorful borders, centered logos, and descriptive copy.

  4. Marketing Outside Shopee

    Rather than get lost in Shopee’s overwhelming marketing clutter, Keane advocated marketing outside the platform through social media and influencer collaborations from the start. As Keane described, “We don’t market from within Shopee itself…We marketed from outside, which is social media. Influencer marketing.”

  5. Build Authenticity

    Speaking to their influencer strategy, Keane shared, “We find authentic mommies who really have kids and then their followings and their comments, their engagement. It’s rather, you know, authentic and then we work with them.”

While the opportunities on Shopee are plentiful, these sellers made it clear that success rarely comes easy. By doing diligent research, visually striking out, pricing competitively, and tapping into authentic marketing channels, new merchants can hopefully tilt the odds in their favor in this ruthlessly competitive arena.

Lessons Learned and Final Thoughts:

The conversation concluded with the panelists reflecting on their entrepreneurial journeys and imparting wisdom to aspiring Shopee sellers. They emphasized the need for continuous learning, adaptability, and embracing change in the ever-evolving e-commerce landscape.

You can check their full interview on Chills with TFC, Episode 168 on Spotify, YouTube, Google podcast, Apple podcast for valuable insights into the world of successful Shopee sellers. These entrepreneurs’ stories of resilience, innovation, and strategic decision-making offer inspiration and guidance to anyone looking to establish a thriving e-commerce business. By embracing multiple platforms, understanding platform dynamics, and connecting with customers through engaging content, aspiring sellers can pave their path to success in the competitive world of e-commerce.

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