The development of e-commerce has played a vital role in the world market as retail continues to modernise.

However, many retailers have not utilised more modern trade methods, like online shopping, said Vu Vinh Phu, President of the Hanoi Supermarket Association, at a conference in Hanoi promoting internet-based retail.

Phu said e-commerce makes shopping more convenient, and increases production and consumption.

Consumers can save time and find lower prices online, said Nguyen Ngoc Hung, Director of Di Sieu Thi Joint-Stock Company. However, some businesses have posted exaggerated advertisements and poor products online, preventing the online market from developing.

Phu urged online retailers to deliver quality products and good customer service to protect the sector's reputation.

State agencies should have strict measures for dealing with online trading violations, he said. However, just in case, consumers should research products carefully before buying.

However, so far, online shopping accounts for only 0.1 to 0.2 percent of the nation's total retail revenue, far lower than in many other countries, said Nguyen Lam Thanh, General Secretary of the Vietnam Digital Media Association.

In developed countries, popular companies sell products online, but in Vietnam they haven't paid much attention to the new form of shopping, Thanh said. It's important to change how people in Vietnam think about online shopping, he said.

The conference was co-organised by the Hanoi Super Market Association, Vietnam Digital Media Association and Dien dan Doanh nghiep (Business Forum).-VNA