More Filipinos choosing to shop online, study says
For 19-YEAR-OLD student Kyla, shopping online lets her shop even when she is too busy to go to an actual mall. For a gamer like Raffy, 20, shopping online for games is one way to relieve stress from school work.
Like Kyla and Raffy, more Filipinos are turning to the Internet for shopping, according to a recent study released by MasterCard.
The 2014 study, which covered the Philippines and 13 other Asia Pacific countries, showed that about three in every five (59 percent) of the online population in the Philippines access the Internet to shop, up from 40 percent in 2013.
“The study points to the importance of online shopping to the Philippine market,” MasterCard said in a statement.
MasterCard’s study found that Filipinos turn to the Internet to purchase the following: Airline tickets (38.4 percent), home appliances and electronic products (35.1 percent), clothing and accessories (31 percent), hotels (29.9 percent) and computer software (29.4 percent).
Meanwhile, sites of apps stores (50.1 percent), music downloads (42.6 percent) and home appliances/electronic products (38.2 percent) draw the most web traffic, the study also showed.
Why do Filipinos go online to shop? Ease and convenience are the most cited reasons.
“Most of the Filipino respondents are satisfied with online shopping, describing it as easy (73.3 percent), convenient (71.9 percent), or fun (64.4 percent), and expressing greater likelihood to purchase in the next six months (79.2 percent).
All these figures are improvements from the results of the 2013 study (61.4 percent, 63 percent, 58.2 percent, and 68.2 percent), respectively,” the statement said.
The study also found more Filipinos using their mobile phones to purchase items— from 21.4 percent in 2012 to 34 percent in 2014, with 94.2 percent of participants able to access the Internet via smart phones, MasterCard noted, adding that those who purchased via mobile phones did so because they were able to do it “on the go.” Availability of apps that facilitate mobile shopping has also made it more convenient.
“Among mobile shoppers, the top categories for purchases are phone apps (24.7 percent), music downloads (22.7 percent) and clothing and accessories (20.7 percent),” the study said.
However, online shoppers have a number of considerations before going ahead and making an online purchase, among them the security of the payment facility (89.7 percent) and the speed of transactions (88.5 percent).
“Before making a purchase, four-fifths consider online reviews,” MasterCard said.
Ethical considerations also come into play, with more than seven in 10 purchasing products “for ethical reasons.”
“Adherence to fair trade principles (77.4 percent), environment-friendliness (76.4 percent), and whether part of the proceeds will go to a good cause (60.8 percent) are the top three ethical considerations in making a purchase,” the study noted.
The 2014 study is part of the Online Shopping Survey that MasterCard commissions annually.
The survey was conducted in 14 Asia Pacific countries with a minimum of 500 respondents per country.
To learn more about the results of the latest MasterCard survey on online shopping, visit http://www.masterintelligence.com/. With a report from Paulo Baylon, Inquirer Research intern
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