While e-commerce continues to make waves in the Asian market, sustainability and transparency must become essential components to the evolution and growth of the space. Hive Life highlights the sustainable e-commerce trends to watch alongside the industry-leading platforms in APAC.
In the wake of the e-commerce evolution in the Asia Pacific region (APAC), businesses are making a necessary shift to the digital realm. The region’s e-commerce market is projected to grow exponentially by 14.3% annually, capping at US$352.68 trillion from 2020 to 2030.
Moreover, sustainability has further transformed the space with environmental wellness, ethicality, and transparency becoming key to e-commerce operations and business models. This comes as no surprise as modern-day consumers’ shifting behaviours and attitudes have significantly contributed to the rise of sustainable business-to-consumer (B2B) online platforms.
Following tremendous growth over a decade, the industry is set to flourish further alongside the emergence of trailblazing technologies and eco-friendly solutions. E-commerce merchants have been quick to adapt to these transformative trends, innovating in viable sustainable solutions. An increasing number of e-commerce businesses have effectively adopted ethical and eco-friendly practices, from offering sustainable products and resale services, to minimising packaging and incorporating carbon offset initiatives.
Read on to explore some of APAC’s innovative sustainable e-commerce concepts making waves in their respective industries.
Sustainable Home and Fashion Marketplaces
Womb is an online eco-retail platform promoting sustainability in Hong Kong’s fashion space. Introducing unique and mindful concepts since 2018, Womb’s two founders and eco-conscious womenpreneurs, Kasia Galak and Maria Grzywacz spotlight diverse artists and indie brands from around the world through their platform. The label derives its brand inspiration from practising ethicality, mindfulness, and sustainability, a primary quality evident in every single one of its brands.
Featuring a thoughtfully curated selection of contemporary chic styles and a fine range of apparel, accessories, homeware, skincare, and more, one can find anything they desire at Womb, from simplistic and comfy tees to trendy modern fashion essentials, embracing minimalistic style.
Your Sustainable Store
From seeking a sustainable store to founding one, Dawn Chen kickstarted her online lifestyle store, Your Sustainable Store, to spread her passion for nature, and encourage green living among her fellow Singaporeans. The epitome of functionality and eco-consciousness, the one-stop-shop offers a generous variety of simple and stylish yet affordable essentials, from basic household goods, to beauty and skincare, to their featured locally crafted products, supporting small and medium businesses from around the globe. Among their extensive range of home and lifestyle goods, some must-try items include the Handcrafted Artisan Soap Bar from Singaporean label Mira and the delicious vegan lip balm made by RdytoGlow.
Sustainable Packaging Marketplaces
More and more F&B brands are now embracing sustainable measures in their day-to-day operations, and as an integral part of the process, eco-conscious packaging is growingly becoming popular. Offering a solution to this trend, Hong Kong-based zero-waste packaging startup, Sustianabl., offers “truly sustainable packaging” through their platform. The label innovated its own eco-solution, the Refibr wonder-material infused with leftover bio-waste from sugarcane and wheat manufacturing, which is then formulated using bagasse pulp.
Responsibly sourced and sustainably composed, Sustainabl. Carries an impressive range of compostables and recyclable alternatives to plastic takeout bundles, from bento trays and sauce pots, to lunch boxes and tableware. On top of its current offerings, it includes an additional feature for brands to personalise their packaging by customising print and logo designs.
Source Green Packaging
A sustainable concept driving B2B solutions, Source Green Packaging was founded in 2021 by the green queen herself, Sonalie Figueiras. Tackling the plastic waste crisis through its state-of-the-art eco-conscious platform, this one-stop-destination was designed to ease the process of searching for and sourcing eco-friendly packaging. Within its extensive green marketplace, businesses can source different types of packaging solutions. For retailers and e-commerce companies especially, provide everything from compostable tissue paper and mailers, to sustainable-certified hemp packaging and shipping boxes.
Imposing radical transparency and accountability throughout their operations, each product is listed with detailed information on its certifications, materials, etc. Moreover, the platform is currently in the process of becoming a Certified B Corporation, facilitating its credibility and commitment to the cause.
Fashion Resale Platforms
Known as one of the premium consignment sellers of sustainable luxury, Australia-based Blue Spinach provides its customers with a platform curated with some of the best selection of luxury fashion, shoes, and accessories. Ranging from Balenciaga to Saint Laurent, Blue Spinach has something for everyone.
Blue Spinach greatly emphasises its product authentication process and promises only authentic luxury. With the aid of a powerful artificial intelligence (AI) system, Entrupy, and current internal authentication, the premium reseller has built its reputation. In an era of rapid consumerism, Blue Spinach aims to provide a platform for buying and reselling pre-loved luxury items so we can do our part in cultivating a sustainable economy while moving away from our current wasteful model.
Taiwan’s e-commerce market has grown tremendously over the past years, and with online consumption and green practices on the rise, resale e-commerce platform PopChill is at the forefront of sustainability and innovation in the region. Catering to local popular demand of preloved and vintage fashion, the marketplace meets the needs of both the buyers and sellers, where one can trade off their secondhand products for other trendy pre-owned goods.
Hosting an array of unique and eclectic collections, from luxury shoes and handbags to their fashionable selection of clothing, the brand also organises a Charity Wardrobe Unboxing, where customers can shop unique styles from the closets of 100 featured local celebrities.
Sustainable B2B E-commerce Marketplace
Ekowarehouse is a B2B e-commerce marketplace globally renowned for its certified eco-conscious goods. What makes the platform especially convenient, is its incredibly vast range of certified organic, fair trade, and eco-labelled products. Furthermore, alongside being the primary retailer of all products listed, the B2B model’s proprietary algorithm technology allows buyers to connect with suppliers across the trade, including farmers, wholesalers, retailers, and others throughout the supply chains. As a revolutionary e-commerce space, it aims to provide greener, kinder, and more sustainable options when it comes to what we consume everyday.