E-commerce is a burgeoning industry. According to the recent Google-Bain-Temasek’s e-Conomy SEA report, Singapore’s internet economy is expected to grow by 35 per cent from US$11 billion in 2020 to US$15 billion this year.
As e-commerce becomes a lucrative business opportunity, it should come as no surprise that many have decided to wrestle for a slice of the pie and start their own e-commerce businesses.
However, the life of an e-commerce entrepreneur is not easy — it is often characterised by irregular working hours, impending tasks, and the constant push for earnings.
E-commerce is an extremely competitive industry, where smaller businesses contend closely with each other, as well as with established marketplaces and their expansive product range.
Not to mention, an e-commerce startup typically has a lean team, which means that a lot of time and energy go into administrative and financial-related tasks.
The folks behind Aspire are entrepreneurs themselves, so they have a first-hand understanding of the personal struggles that business owners face. Andrea Baronchelli, co-founder and CEO, was the chief marketing officer at Lazada Group before starting at Aspire.
With the rise of e-commerce businesses, the team started noticing the demand for unique business solutions.
To recognise the challenges of being an e-commerce business owner, Aspire wants to “reward” them for their efforts by launching the first-ever card designed for e-commerce businesses.
This card rewards them for their efforts through relevant savings and helps streamline processes to save time.
Earn unlimited cashback on e-commerce business essentials
It is no surprise that thousands of e-commerce businesses have taken to using the Aspire card to manage their overall business expenses.
Unlike other startups or digital service providers, e-commerce businesses have to deal with inventory suppliers, logistics and delivery services, and e-commerce platforms.
E-commerce businesses also have to push a lot of ads on digital platforms and marketplaces to generate demand. While these are all necessary costs of running a business, Aspire hopes to ease the burden by providing unlimited cashback on these e-commerce business essentials.
Aspire offers unlimited 1% cashback on qualifying e-commerce purchases. This cashback is spread across four different categories of merchants — software and services, inventory and supplies, logistics and delivery, and digital marketing.
There is a curated list of trusted merchants such as Alibaba, Taobao, Ninja Van, SingPost, and Shopify under Aspire’s cashback program. Business owners can also submit a request if the merchant they want is not listed.
For example, it costs about S$5,000 for an advanced Shopify platform for a year. While 1% doesn’t sound like a lot, multiply that across several expenses, and they add up to a substantial amount. A little does go a long way for budding entrepreneurs, and Aspire understands that.
A simple, clear, and transparent system, Aspire’s cashback program is much preferred over a points system as the latter typically has confusing features such as a multiplier program.
The payouts from the cashbacks are credited directly into their Aspire Business Account. This allows entrepreneurs to reinvest the savings into expanding their businesses and help to alleviate their financial burden.
Get the lowest FX rates to boost business bottomline
The Aspire e-commerce card offers the lowest foreign transaction fee rates — up to five times cheaper than traditional banks with no hidden fees.
This is especially important for e-commerce businesses that make international purchases, either through the card or through outbound foreign transfers using their Aspire Business Account.
When using Aspire’s e-commerce card for international expenses, Aspire charges a transparent 0.7% fee on Visa rates and gives a cashback of 1% on top of that. This is in contrast to the average FX markup of 3.7% imposed by traditional banks.
This helps e-commerce businesses avoid sneaky bank exchange rate markups, and foreign transaction fees and businesses also receive a much higher cashback.
Not purchasing your inventory by card? Not a problem. The same applies when businesses use the Aspire Business Account to send money abroad. They pay the lowest transparent fees available in the market, which is up to five times cheaper than banks.
With FX transfers, Aspire has a calculator available on their website that factors in their transfer fees and exchange rate.
All you have to do is enter the amount you wish to transfer, and Aspire’s calculator tells you exactly what the exchange rate is and their fee.
Entrepreneurs will always know the true cost of transfers upfront, and there are no surprises here.
The Aspire e-commerce card also has no application or annual card fee, so business owners need not worry about additional costs. There is also no minimum spend required to maintain the card.
Issue unlimited cards to manage expenses and subscriptions in one place
As we know, the life of an entrepreneur is an extremely busy one. Aspire makes it easier through real-time tracking and categorisation of business expenses so they can focus their efforts on scaling up their business.
The Aspire e-commerce card comes in the form of a virtual Visa corporate debit card that is immediately issued upon approval of your business account.
Aspire also allows the issue of unique, unlimited cards. Business owners can issue separate cards for each kind of supplier or subscription, thereby having the power to track the different kinds of expenses in real-time.
They can also cancel or freeze these cards whenever they want, at the click of a button.
A neatly categorised view of overall expenses, along with the power to manage the rights on a card, makes the decision-making process faster and easier, such as stopping an unwanted subscription.
E-commerce businesses also sometimes face scenarios where advertising platforms might block their cards.
Having multiple cards as backup is of immense value in such situations. They can help avoid advertising efforts from stalling, especially during peak business periods.
Aspire also allows e-commerce business owners to issue multiple cards to employees, helping them distribute spending so they can move faster to buy things.
It also removes the frustration and time loss from sharing one-time passwords (OTPs) for all transactions.
Not only can they speed up the purchasing process, but also stay informed with real-time notifications. To avoid costly surprises, e-commerce owners can set spending limits on each card and ensure that they are always on budget.
The e-commerce card that is invaluable to any business
Designed with the challenges and requirements of e-commerce businesses in mind, this makes the e-commerce card from Aspire the first of its kind.
With cashback on e-commerce services, a transparent system on FX exchange, and an efficient way to track expenses, the Aspire E-commerce Card proves to be an invaluable tool for entrepreneurs.
Aspire is offering up to S$500 cashback when entrepreneurs sign up with the promo code “ECOMCARD” by 30 November 2021.
They will be given S$100 for a minimum total spend of S$1,000 per qualifying merchant, for up to five merchants, before 31 December 2021.
The experience of an entrepreneur is likened to having too many tabs open at once and no idea where the music is coming from. Aspire makes life as an entrepreneur a little easier, so do take full advantage of this promo and sign up for the card here.
This article was written in collaboration with Aspire.
Featured Image Credit: Aspire