Retail in Asia

In Shops

Chinese consumers most avid mobile, online shoppers in Asia-Pacific

More than half of Chinese consumers (59.4 percent) are savvy shoppers, making purchases via their mobile devices, the highest in Asia-Pacific region, according to the latest MasterCard Online Shopping Survey.

Other top mobile shopping markets include Thailand (51.2 percent), Korea (47.6 percent), India (47.1 percent) and Indonesia (46.7 percent). However, other countries are catching up: Taiwan (up by 17 percent since 2012), the Philippines (up by 11.4 percent). On the other hand, consumers from New Zealand (15 percent, Japan (22.9 percent) and Australia (24.8 percent) show the lowest intent to purchase using their smartphones.

The survey was conducted across 25 markets between November and December 2013. The report for the Asia-Pacific region and included interviews with 7,010 respondents from 14 markets who were asked questions about their online shopping habits.

Across the 14 Asia-Pacific markets, convenience (46.8 percent), the ability to shop on the go (41.3 percent) and the growing availability of apps that make it easier to shop (40.8 percent) emerged as the most compelling reasons for driving smartphone shopping. Clothing and fashion accessories (26 percent) topped the list of items purchased through smartphones, followed by apps (22.4 percent) and music (18.8 percent).

“For the first time, we see that clothing and fashion accessories have overtaken apps to become the top category of items purchased via smartphones. This indicates a strong and successful shift by merchants to enhance the mobile experience to consumers to make it more convenient,” said Pierre Burret, Region Head, Asia-Pacific, MasterCard Advisors.

Results of the survey show that two-thirds of Asia-Pacific consumers also go online to shop, with nearly 100 percent of respondents from China indicating that they have made at least one online purchase in the past three months. South Korean and Australian consumers are also passionate about shopping on the net with 97 percent and 90 percent of respondents having made at least one purchase online, respectively.

Moreover, a spike was noted in the number of Indian respondents who use the Internet for shopping from 53.1 percent in 2012 to 80 percent in 2013. Consequently, the percentage of Indians who have shopped online in the last three months has also gone up from 70.9 percent in 2012 to 87.8 percent in 2013.

New mobile technologies are also gaining traction among consumers in the region, with mobile banking apps having the highest awareness-familiarity levels at 48.7 percent, followed by in-game-app shopping (35.7 percent) and in-social-networking-app shopping (34.9 percnet).

However, security remains a key consideration for consumers across Asia-Pacific (85.3 percent) when shopping online, with respondents from Indonesia (92 percent), China (91.8 percent), Malaysia (91.2 percent), Singapore (89.8 percent) and Australia (89.3 percent) citing it as a top concern, followed by the monetary value of the item (84.8 percent), and the convenience of the payment method (84.6 percent).

“The survey shows that there is a strong need to provide not only secure, but also convenient payments solutions to consumers in Asia-Pacific as they move to a more digital lifestyle. MasterCard is committed to providing consumers with convenient and safe payment options that enable a more seamless shopping experience,” Burret added.