Southeast Asians say shopping online is part of daily life: survey

April 08, 2022 - 11:04

A large number of shoppers in Southeast Asia including Việt Nam now consider shopping online integral to daily life, a consumer study has found.


More people in Southeast Asia love shopping online. — Photo courtesy of Lazada Vietnam

HCM CITY — A large number of shoppers in Southeast Asia including Việt Nam now consider shopping online integral to daily life, a consumer study has found.

The study, done by Lazada and Milieu Insight, said two years ago, the figure was nearly 60 per cent. It now jumped to 73 per cent.

In the Vietnamese market, the study found that digital commerce had taken hold as an everyday convenience. 

In fact, Việt Nam had the highest percentage of respondents in the region considering online shopping as indispensable (81 per cent) as well as those who shop online at least once a week.

Some 85 per cent said they were spending more on online purchases since the COVID-19 outbreak.

Shoppers were looking for value-for-money deals to optimise household expenses, with 66 per cent saying they always look for the best deals.

Shoppers in Việt Nam, Indonesia and the Philippines had a preference for local brands, with one in two Vietnamese respondents showing a strong preference for them. 

Dr Li Xiuping, NUS EMBA-C deputy academic director and associate professor of marketing, National University of Singapore, said: “The digitisation of shopping has changed consumer behaviours across different touch points, such as the shorter journey from awareness to purchase, and the limited senses that are engaged via online shopping.

“Thus, it is important for brands and sellers to understand their target consumers and the new online purchase journey well in order to give a strong reason to their consumers to purchase and remain competitive.” 

In the region, low prices and affordable shipping topped the list of reasons for people to buy online, followed closely by ease of search and convenience. 

Buying authentic products was amongst the top reasons for online shopping in Singapore (54 per cent) and Việt Nam (53 per cent) while the variety of payment options available was the top reason in Indonesia.

Gerald Ang, CEO of Milieu Insight, said: “The online shopping landscape has evolved massively in the last two years with Southeast Asia leading this change globally. That is why we wanted to identify the new behaviours and current sentiments of online shoppers in Southeast Asia. On the back of this partnership with Lazada we’ve gathered fundamental data across their six regional markets, helping them understand the intricacies of each.”  

The study found that consumers were actively choosing to buy their items through digital channels, with 65 per cent saying they already know what they are going to buy when they shop online. To further augment the experience, 29 per cent reported enhanced engagement with the platform through additional browsing for the best deals and exploring the platform for additional items ahead of completing the sale.

As people enter the recovery phase after COVID, the lasting wellness influences of the pandemic seemed to be here to stay with 58 per cent of respondents investing in themselves by spending on health and beauty items. — VNS