Taiwan - Country Commercial Guide
eCommerce

Describes what a company needs to know to take advantage of e-commerce in the local market and covers prominent B2B websites.

Last published date: 2021-09-13

Overview

The e-commerce market in Taiwan has grown rapidly over the past few years. Taiwan’s e-commerce market (pure online platforms) in 2020 grew at  16.2% to reach NT$241.2 billion (about US$8.6 billion), according to Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) data. As Taiwan’s e-commerce market continues to develop, an increasing number of younger shoppers choose to shop at online retailers. Digital media and entertainment, apparel and footwear, and consumer electronics remain the top three most purchased products from online retailers. The demand for quick delivery has led to an increase in sales of basic household necessities on online platforms. The evolution of e-commerce consumer expectations has led to new opportunities for e-commerce retailers and service providers.

Internet Penetration Rate

In 2020, the internet penetration rate in Taiwan stood at 92.6% of the population. 43.7% of Taiwan’s internet users use a mobile phone to connect to the internet, 50.4% use a desktop or laptop, and 5.8% use a tablet.  (Source: Taiwan Network Information Center)

Current Market Trends

The Taiwan e-commerce market features a wide variety of products and services, such as:

  • Apparel
  • Beauty and skincare products
  • Computers and accessories
  • Eyewear
  • Groceries
  • Food delivery
  • Household goods
  • Digital entertainment and videogames
  • Baby-care products
  • Shoes, bags, and brand name goods
  • Travel packages, hotels, and flights

Domestic e-Commerce (B2C)

Taiwan’s e-merchants are generally small-scale operations, 82% of which conduct business using preexisting e-commerce shopping platforms rather than maintaining their own websites, which keeps business costs low. These online platforms include Shopee, Ruten, MoMo, PChome.

Business-to-Business e-Commerce

Taiwan has a robust business-to-business (B2B) e-commerce environment, with two major web portals run by the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA). TaiwanTrade is an e-commerce portal that allows businesses to find suppliers, manufacturers and distributors. iDealEZ Online Marketplace is a platform that allows businesses to buy small quantities to sample items directly from suppliers. B2B e-commerce is the most developed in the information technology, chemical, and textile industries.

Online Payment

  • Online shoppers in Taiwan have several payment options for their e-commerce purchases:
  • Mobile payment
  • Credit card
  • Cash
  • Electronic stored value cards

In 2020, the Marketing Intelligence and Consulting Institute (MIC)  reported that given options, over 37% of Taiwanese consumers prefer mobile payment, followed by credit cards (34.5%) and cash (18.8%).

Mobile payment is gaining popularity as more Taiwanese consumers use cellphones. According to a 2020 survey, the top three mobile payment brands used, are LINE Pay (57.9%), Apple Pay (31.6%), JKo Pay (17.5%). This was followed by Google Pay (9.4%), Taiwan Pay (9.1%), PX Pay (6.2%) and Pi Pay (3.4%). (Source: Marketing Intelligence and Consulting Institute)

Mobile E-Commerce

Among the monthly visitors of mobile shopping applications, Taiwan’s online shopping consumers mainly use Shopee (52.36 million pageviews/month), followed by PChome (32.44 million pageviews/month), Momoshop (31.17 million pageviews/month), and Ruten (30.17 million pageviews/month).

Major Buying Holidays

November 11th (11/11), known as “Singles’ Day”, is an unofficial consumer holiday observed by young people in Taiwan.  On this day, young people who are not in a relationship celebrate their single status by indulging in both online and offline shopping for themselves or purchasing gifts to initiate a new relationship.

Some Taiwan consumers are also beginning to celebrate other international consumer holidays. These include Christmas, Black Friday, and Mother’s Day, among others.  Suppliers offer special discounts, which leads to higher sales.

Social Media

In 2021, YouTube (89.6%) was the lead social media platform in Taiwan, followed by Facebook (89.2%), Line (88%), and Instagram (59.5%) (Source: Taiwan Internet Report 2020)

Business-to-Business Websites

  • Amazon
  • eBay
  • TaiwanTrade
  • TaiwanTrade iDealEZ

Business-to-Consumer and B2B-to-Consumer (B2B2C) Websites

  • books.com.tw
  • Friday
  • ibon Mart
  • Momoshop
  • PChome
  • Ruten.com
  • Rakuten Ichiba Taiwan
  • Shopee Taiwan
  • Taobao.com
  • Yahoo! Taiwan

Online-to-Offline (O2O) Websites

  • 17Life
  • Gomaji
  • Groupon