The Vietnamese watch market is growing rapidly, presenting opportunities for foreign brands to expand their reach and tap into a new customer base. However, entering the Vietnamese watch market can be challenging for foreign brands, who must navigate a complex and competitive landscape. In this context, finding and building strong relationships with local watch resellers is essential for success in the Vietnamese market. In this article, we have outlined several strategies that foreign brands can use to find and establish relationships with watch resellers in Vietnam.
I. Research The Market
In order to succeed in the competitive Vietnamese market, it is essential for foreign distributors to conduct thorough research and establish strong partnerships with local resellers.
1. Conduct market research to understand the demand for watches in Vietnam.
One important step in this process is to conduct market research to understand the demand for watches in Vietnam. According to a report by Qandme, the imported watch market in Vietnam in 2022 accounted for 388M, up by 12% compared with the previous year. Specifically,
- Smartwatch accounts for more than 50% of the total watch industry. Apple is dominant in the smartphone area with 42% of the share. What follows are Samsung, LG, and Garmin.
- Luxury watch accounts for the least due to high amount of the high product price. Geneva, Richemont and Rolex, Hublot are the top suppliers in this category
2. Identify the most popular watch brands and styles among Vietnamese consumers.
It is important to note that Vietnamese consumers have varying preferences and purchasing power depending on their location and socioeconomic status. For example, luxury watch brands such as Rolex and Omega are more popular among consumers in urban areas with higher incomes, while mid-range brands such as Casio and Seiko are more popular with lower incomes.
More specifically, when it comes to the young generations, one of the most popular watch styles among Gen Z in Vietnam is the sports watch. These watches are popular for their durability and versatility, making them suitable for a range of activities, from exercise to outdoor adventures. Brands such as Casio and G-Shock are popular among Gen Z in Vietnam for their sporty and rugged designs.
Another popular watch style among Gen Z in Vietnam is the minimalist watch. These watches are characterized by their simple, clean designs with few or no complications. Minimalist watches are popular for their understated elegance and versatility, making them suitable for both casual and formal occasions. International brands such as Daniel Wellington and MVMT are popular among Gen Z in Vietnam for their minimalist designs.
3. Analyze the pricing strategies and sales channels of competitors.
In addition to identifying popular watch brands and styles, it is also important for foreign distributors to analyze the pricing strategies and sales channels of their competitors. For instance, some competitors may be selling their products through e-commerce platforms such as Lazada and Shopee, while others may be focusing on physical stores in shopping centers or street shops in popular tourist areas. By understanding the different sales channels and pricing strategies used by competitors, foreign distributors can make informed decisions about how to price their products and which sales channels to focus on.
II. Attend Trade Shows & Events
Attending trade shows and events is a great way for foreign distributors to connect with potential watch resellers in Vietnam. These events bring together industry professionals, retailers, and consumers, providing an opportunity to showcase your products and build valuable business relationships.
One of the most prominent events in Vietnam’s watch industry is the annual International Jewelry + Watch (or IJV), which attracts watch enthusiasts and professionals from across the country. The fair showcases a range of products, from luxury timepieces to affordable fashion watches, and offers an opportunity for brands to network with potential resellers and distributors.
Attending these events not only allows foreign brands to showcase their products but also provides an opportunity to gain insights into the local market and consumer behavior. brands can observe consumer preferences and purchasing habits, and use this information to tailor their marketing and sales strategies to better appeal to the Vietnamese market. In addition to that, international brands can eventually build strong networks with other industry professionals and potential partners.
III. Use Online Resources
In addition to attending trade shows and events, foreign brands or manufacturers can also use online resources to find watch resellers in Vietnam. With the growth of e-commerce platforms and online marketplaces, the Internet has become an increasingly important tool for businesses to expand their reach and connect with potential partners.
One of the most popular e-commerce platforms in Vietnam is Lazada, which offers a range of products, including watches, from both local and international sellers. You can search on Lazada to find out prominent watch retailers. Similar e-commerce platforms, such as Shopee and Tiki, also offer opportunities for you to expand your reach to potential resellers.
Online business directories, such as Vietnam Yellow Pages and Kompass, can also be a valuable resource for foreign brands to find potential resellers and distributors in Vietnam. These directories provide contact information and company profiles of businesses operating in various industries, including the watch industry.
Social media platforms, such as Facebook and Instagram, can also be useful for foreign brands to find potential resellers in Vietnam. By searching for relevant hashtags and following popular watch pages and influencers in Vietnam, foreign brands can connect with potential partners and gain insights into the local market and consumer behavior. Besides, if you use social media to build your brands, distributors can actively approach you since they see that your brand is loved by online fans. You can also run ads to look for resellers with very attractive retailing policies and incentives. Many brands also use this way to recruit resellers for their products.
IV. Google Search
If you search for watches on Google, you will see sellers. They can be a store chain specializing in selling watches, smaller independent sellers, the brands themselves, or the distributors.
Watch sellers in Vietnam can import goods directly from brands or buy from bigger distributors.
You can trace and contact them one by one.
1. Search keywords
Use specific keywords related to your search. For example:
- “Watch distributors in Vietnam”
- “Vietnam watch wholesalers”
- “Authorized watch dealers Vietnam”
- “Luxury watch resellers Vietnam”
Examine the search results carefully. Look for websites, business directories, forums, and articles that mention watch resellers or distributors in Vietnam.
2. Use location filters
If you’re using Google Maps, search with location-specific terms, like “watch distributors in Ho Chi Minh City” or “Hanoi watch resellers.” This can help you find physical stores on the map.
3. Explore websites
Click on relevant search results. These may include official websites of distributors, watch retailers, and industry platforms. Take note of contact information, product offerings, and any details relevant to your distribution needs.
4. Contact and inquire
Visit the websites of potential partners and look for contact details or inquiry forms. Send emails or make calls to express your interest in collaboration. In your communication, outline your role as a foreign distributor and your intention to explore partnership opportunities.
V. Local Experts
Engaging local experts can greatly assist foreign distributors in finding watch resellers in Vietnam. These experts are familiar with the local market, culture, and business landscape, which can help streamline the process and increase the likelihood of successful partnerships. Here’s how foreign distributors can utilize local experts to find watch resellers in Vietnam:
1. Identify local experts
Look for professionals who are well-connected in the Vietnamese business community and have expertise in the watch industry or distribution sector. These experts could include business consultants, industry advisors, trade specialists, or market researchers.
2. Engage in Networking
Attend industry events, trade shows, and business conferences related to watches, distribution, or your specific industry. Network with local experts, industry professionals, and potential partners. This can help you build relationships and gather insights.
3. Hire a local consultant
Consider hiring a local business consultant with experience in the watch industry and distribution. They can provide valuable guidance, recommend potential partners, and navigate cultural nuances.
4. Market research
Collaborate with local market research firms or consultants who can provide you with detailed insights into the Vietnamese watch market. This information can include market trends, consumer preferences, and potential distribution channels.
5. Introductions and recommendations
Local experts can introduce you to potential partners or make recommendations based on their industry knowledge and network.
6. Negotiation support
Local experts can help navigate negotiations by providing insights into local business practices, pricing expectations, and terms that are common in the Vietnamese market.
In conclusion, entering the Vietnamese watch market requires a thorough understanding of the local market, as well as a strategic approach to identifying potential resellers and establishing strong partnerships with them. However, as the demand for high-quality and fashionable watches continues to grow in Vietnam, foreign brands must differentiate themselves and provide exceptional customer support so that they can be well-positioned to succeed in this market.
Learn more about how to gain the trust of local distributors in Vietnam: