Thais shopping more on foreign websites, Mastercard online survey finds
The latest MasterCard Online Shopping Behaviour survey shows that shopping on foreign websites is becoming increasingly popular among Thais.
The average share of online purchase occasions from websites outside Thailand has notably increased, to 31.5 per cent from 20.0 per cent in 2011, and the share of online purchases climbed to 29.9 per cent from 20.0 per cent.
The survey by MasterCard Worldwide reveals that online shopping remains one of the main purposes for Thai consumers going online (10.9 per cent), while receiving/sending e-mails and updating status on social-networking sites are the most common reasons (15.5 per cent and 14.1 per cent respectively).
For the top categories of online visits, cinemas (46.3 per cent), music downloads (44.9 per cent), and clothing and accessories (43.3 per cent) continue to be the top three on the list, with the rise of the percentage of the visits to luxury or high-end goods sites from an average of 48.4 per cent from 44.4 per cent in 2011.
What surprised MasterCard the most was the fact that in Thailand, the popular trend of cross-border shopping on foreign sites was being spearheaded by men. They are more likely than women to shop on foreign websites, with 35.0 per cent of their online shopping occasions going overseas. This average has grown significantly from 24.0 per cent in the previous survey, as well as the share of online spends of 32.3 per cent from 23.0 per cent for male shoppers' behaviour.
As for females, the survey also witnessed the rise of online purchase occasions of 27.9 per cent last year, compared with 17.0 per cent in 2011, and online spends of 27.5 per cent, compared with 18.0 per cent.
The most common purchases from overseas websites for people in Thailand were applications (19.9 per cent), hotel accommodations (18.1 per cent), and toys and gifts (15.7 per cent).
"Technology facilitates people's lifestyles in various ways: We can now shop any time and anywhere we want through various online channels," said Gregg Hirano, vice president and country manager for Thailand at MasterCard Worldwide. "Additionally, we are no longer limited to just local shops, as we can now purchase goods and services from foreign websites in a user-friendly approach that is accompanied by a safe and secure way to make an online payment.
"Besides that, I am glad to see that both male and female shoppers are enjoying the overall experience of online shopping, as well as cross-border shopping from overseas sites. Innovation definitely makes this world smaller and brings people closer in a good way."
The survey was conducted across 25 markets in the Asia-Pacific region, the Middle East and Africa between November and January.
Five hundred respondents per country across 14 countries in Asia and the Pacific between the ages of 18 and 64 years were surveyed through both online and offline channels.
Among the total respondents, 503 were Thais who were part of the banked population, accessed the Internet at least once a week, and were representatives in terms of age and gender of the online population in the market.