Cashback app ShopBack taps offline opportunities in Singapore

It’s following a large number of online retailers who have already started growing an offline presence.

Singapore-based ShopBack, an e-commerce services firm that offers its users rewards for each purchase made in exchange for data, has officially forayed into the offline space by targeting F&B customers through a partnership with Visa and Mastercard in the city-state, joining a number of online businesses that are growing their offline presence.

In a statement today, ShopBack said it has launched its ShopBack GO rewards programme in partnership with the two credit card firms to enable users to get five to 10 percent cashback at over 400 F&B brands in selected areas. ShopBack GO also allows F&B partners to access the firm’s existing base of over 1 million Singaporeans via its mobile app.

ShopBack claims to be the dominant player in Southeast Asia’s e-commerce cashback market, with presence in Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand, Taiwan, and Australia. It was founded in September 2014.

For the past four years, its core business has succeeded in delivering cost-effective marketing for e-commerce merchants while rewarding users with cashback for their online purchases, ShopBack Singapore country head Vincent Wong said.

“We have now replicated the experience offline with ShopBack GO, an omnichannel retail solution for offline merchants and rewards platform for users,” Wong added.

The launch of ShopBack GO is part of the e-commerce firm’s efforts to encourage the adoption of cashless payments, especially in Singapore’s vibrant food scene. Initially, the startup partnered with brands in four select areas – One-North, Buona Vista, Holland Village, and Tanjong Pagar – to conduct experiments with F&B brands.

“Seven in 10 consumers are looking to find offers for their dining experience. We believe ShopBack GO’s reward-based model will appeal to the foodie in many Singaporeans who love a great deal for good food. Given how frequently local consumers dine out, solutions such as these will also go a long way to drive behavioral change towards a wider use of cashless payments in Singapore,” said Mastercard Singapore country manager Deborah Heng.

ShopBack GO integrates with F&B brands’ point-of-sale systems with minimal operational disruption and zero hardware or software installation, the firm says.

A number of online retailers have already started growing their offline presence as more consumers continue to buy products from brick-and-mortar stores. In China, e-commerce giant Alibaba is mastering “online-to-offline” (O2O) retailing to allow customers to use digital channels to buy from physical businesses, according to a report.

Alibaba now runs 40 supermarkets under the Hema Xiansheng brand in 10 Chinese cities and is looking at opening 2,000 more over the next five years.

American e-commerce giant Amazon has also forayed into the offline market in a move to attract more customers through physical retail. In Spain, the company launched its first Madrid pop-up store to sell everything from electronics goods to video games to clothing.

Editor: Nadine Freischlad