Friday, March 19th, 2010 - MasterCard Worldwide
Airline Tickets and Hotel Accommodation Among the Most Purchased Items in Singapore

Singapore: When it comes to online shopping, men in Singapore are the big spenders as they out-shopped their female counterparts by over 20%, according to the latest survey on online shopping habits by MasterCard Worldwide in fourth quarter last year. Male online shoppers spent an average of US$852, compared to the US$693.7 spent per female shopper over a three-month period. Women tend to make more purchases however, as the survey found that female shoppers bought an average of 4.9 items per shopper compared to the 4.3 items per shopper bought by males in the same period.

While the overall average spend per shopper had decreased to US$779 in 2009 versus US$841 in 2008, the average number of items purchase over a three-month period has gone up from 3.7 in 2008 to 4.6 in 2009.

This is the third survey on online shopping habits conducted by MasterCard. It covered 8000 respondents across 14 markets: Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand and UAE, with Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines and Taiwan being new markets included in 2009. The inaugural survey was conducted in December 2007. The survey does not represent MasterCard financial performance.

Satisfaction with online shopping also remains high in Singapore for the third year running, as some 86% of respondents who had made a purchase online in the last three months were satisfied with their experience, versus 84% in 2008 and 83% in 2007. A high proportion of these are repeat customers as 73% of respondents stated they are likely to make an online purchase in the next six months.

Secure payment facilities (93%), convenient payment methods (93%) and price and value (92%) of the items being purchased are the top three most important factors influencing respondents’ online shopping experience. In comparison, respondents were less likely to be compelled by promotional offers with 78% cited them as an important factor.

Respondents overall are becoming more comfortable with shopping on the Internet, and there seems to be a greater ease with using the medium, with 73% of respondents having stated that it has become easy to shop online in 2009 versus 62% in 2008, whilst 80% of respondents stated that it is convenient to shop online in 2009 versus 67% in 2008.

“Having one of the highest broadband internet penetration rates in Asia, online shopping is certainly a popular way for Singaporeans to make purchases. Online retailers have also enhanced the online shopping experience through convenient and secure payment facilities, and by offering consumers value-for-money as reflected in the latest MasterCard survey. Male and female shoppers alike are growing increasingly comfortable with the medium, though male shoppers appear to be making more big-ticket purchases," said Julienne Loh, vice president and Country Manager, Singapore, MasterCard Worldwide.
The most common items purchased online remained the same as previous years and they include airline tickets (53%), hotel accommodations (41%), movie or concert tickets (40%), ladies’ clothing and accessories (39%) and books & art (26%).

Singaporeans tend to plan their online purchases in advance with eight in ten respondents doing research before making a purchase. Research methods included browsing the internet in general as well as specific merchants’ websites. More than 80% of the online shoppers are likely to be swayed into making an impulsive purchase when heavy discounts on prices are offered. Unique products that are only available online (56%) are another key factor leading to impulse buys.

NOTE TO EDITORS: This news release is distributed with the following:
• More information on the survey can be found at the website www.masterintelligence.com
• A you-tube video comprising further insights from Garth Viegas, senior business leader, Intelligence & Planning, Asia/Pacific, Middle East & Africa, MasterCard Worldwide can be accessed at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KA-uRUflbkA

MasterCard and its Suite of Research Properties
The MasterCard Worldwide Index suite of research products in Asia/Pacific, Middle East and Africa includes the flagship MasterCard Worldwide Index of Consumer Confidence, and the MasterCard Worldwide Index of Consumer Purchasing Resilience, both of which are released six monthly, and MasterCard Worldwide Index of Women’s Advancement, which is released annually.

Besides these, MasterCard has released the annual survey on consumers’ online shopping habits since December 2007 and this is the third survey conducted by MasterCard. MasterCard also regularly releases Insights reports; the series represents in part its ongoing research and analysis of business dynamics, financial policies and regulatory activities in the Asia/Pacific, Middle East and Africa region. Over 70 Insights reports have been produced since 2004. MasterCard has also released a series of four books on Asian consumer insights, authored by its Asia/Pacific economist, Dr. Yuwa Hedrick-Wong and published by John Wiley & Sons.

The MasterCard Indexes and Insights reports are available at www.masterintelligence.com

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MasterCard Worldwide


MasterCard Worldwide advances global commerce by providing a critical economic link among financial institutions, businesses, cardholders and merchants worldwide. As a franchisor, processor and advisor, MasterCard develops and markets payment solutions, processes over 22 billion transactions each year, and provides industry-leading analysis and consulting services to financial-institution customers and merchants. Powered by the MasterCard Worldwide Network and through its family of brands, including MasterCard®, Maestro® and Cirrus®, MasterCard serves consumers and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. For more information go to www.mastercard.com. Follow us on Twitter:@mastercardnews.
Ashwin Seshadri
P: (65) 6825-8021
W: www.mastercard.com

Hong Mei Yu

P: (65) 6825-8045

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