Trade bodies roll out virtual Great Singapore Sale this year

THE Singapore Retailers Association (SRA) has partnered three trade bodies to roll out the annual Great Singapore Sale (GSS) virtually.

These trade bodies are the Association of Singapore Attractions (ASA), Singapore Furniture Industries Council (SFIC) and Textile & Fashion Federation (TaFF).

The "eGSS" will run from Sept 9 to Oct 10 this year and feature online retail with virtual activities, the parties said in a joint statement on Thursday.

Mall operator Frasers Property Retail will be eGSS 2020's partner, supporting various campaign initiatives across 14 malls. It will extend preferential rates to all members of the eGSS organising committee to onboard their Frasers e-store.

This year's eGSS is a unified marketing effort designed to help retailers digitalise, especially in e-commerce. It seeks to drive local consumption and offer shoppers a diverse and holistic online and offline shopping experience, the statement said.

The eGSS is one of the key events in the Singapore Tourism Board's (STB) SingapoRediscovers campaign - a nine-month-long marketing push touting "mini-holidays" for locals. It is the first concerted effort focusing on local visitors, with STB setting aside some S$45 million for the campaign. 

eGSS 2020 will have virtual activities such as offers, an interactive game, as well as digital tools like virtual reality and augmented reality housed on GoSpree - a mobile app launched by the SRA to increase sales and drive shopper traffic to malls.

ASA members will offer a range of promotions, from back-of-house experiences to family passes, as well as connect audiences with online content through the GoSpree platform. According to ASA chairman Kevin Cheong, this is the first time visitor attractions in Singapore is working with the retail fraternity. 

The SFIC will present The Furniture Centrum, a digital and experiential furniture mini-mall and virtual furniture showroom.

The eGSS will create digital lookbook content highlighting fashion and lifestyle products, services and experiences which can be purchased on OneOrchard.Store - an e-commerce platform by TaFF.

There will also be four editions of an eGSS catalogue produced to cater to different shoppers' profiles and live streaming on Facebook by popular influencers on brands and services offered, as well as selected items on limited edition.

SRA president R Dhinakaran said this year's strategic direction of the eGSS takes into account the circumstance which the retail industry is operating in. He added that amid the pandemic, agility and adaptability are key drivers and this drove SRA to organise the eGSS.

Enterprise Singapore director of retail and design Alan Yeo said that even pre-Covid-19, many retailers got onto digital platforms and leveraged digital marketing to augment existing physical sales channels and stay engaged with digitally-savvy customers.

He said: "This year's eGSS will help multiply these efforts, as retailers continue their digitalisation journey and acquire new capabilities to stay agile and relevant during this period."

STB retail and dining director Ranita Sundra said: "This is a challenging period for the retail scene, and we hope shoppers can come forward to support our local businesses."

Mr Cheong said: "Our aim is to keep top-of-mind with Singapore residents, remind them that visitor attractions in Singapore are safe and great places to unwind and reconnect with families and friends, and, we need their support to stay in the game."

SFIC president Mark Yong: "With more consumers going online to make their furniture and furnishings purchases, we have been encouraging and guiding members to take advantage of digital tools and platforms to market their products and services."

TaFF president Wilson Teo said: "We hope to take the opportunity to highlight Design Orchard and we look forward to engaging shoppers collectively with content and presenting an integrated on-offline shopping experience."

TaFF was appointed as the new operator for the Design Orchard retail showcase - an integrated retail and incubation space for Singapore designers to display their creative pieces.