Online shopping in Vietnam has grown fast in the past months with growth in the number of Vietnamese shopping online at the second highest rate in the Asia-Pacific region, according to the MasterCard Survey on Online Shopping 2014. The survey showed that the number of Vietnamese who shopped online from October to December last year expanded from 68.4% to 80.2%. With an increase of 11.8 percentage points, Vietnam recorded the second highest growth rate in the region after Malaysia with 14.4% points (from 70% to 84.4%).
MasterCard conducted the survey in 14 Asia-Pacific and 11 Middle East and Africa markets, with a minimum of 500 respondents per market. They include Australia, China, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, India, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, New Zealand, Taiwan, the Philippines and Indonesia.
Arn Vogels, country manager and chief representative of MasterCard in Indochina, said in a review report of the survey that online shopping in Vietnam continues to experience significant growth and is expected to dethrone in-store shopping in a very near future.
“The efforts to make online shopping become easier and solve customers’ concerns over the past time such as improving transaction security, exchange/return policy, offering free or minimal delivery charges are cited as reasons for the continued explosion in online shopping in Vietnam,” Vogels said.
More than two-thirds of respondents (67.6%) chose online shopping as one of the reasons to access the Internet, up by 13.8% from last year. Female respondents and people aged 35-44 remain the most likely to make purchases online, and tend to purchase more items and shop more frequently than the other segments.
The top three sectors for online shoppers were airlines, home appliances and electronic products, and travel. Airlines remained the group with the biggest median online spending at $95 on average although it declined from US$143 last year, followed by home appliances and electronics with $82 and travel with $71.
The most visited websites for online shoppers in Vietnam were Lazada (24.4%), Hotdeal (21.9%), Mua Chung (16.2%) and Chotot (14.7%).
The Vietnam online shopping 2014 survey made by the Vietnam E-commerce and Information Technology Agency under the Ministry of Industry and Trade showed that there were nearly 220 websites for shopping online with combined revenues of over $77.7 million.
Among them, lazada.vn ranked first in terms of revenue, accounting for around 36% of the total revenue, followed by sendo.vn, zalora.vn, tiki.vn and ebay.vn.
Compared to the previous years, more respondents made purchases through their mobile phones, rising from 34.9% in 2013 to 45.2% in 2014, according to MasterCard. The proportion of respondents saying that they did not make purchases and do not intend to make purchases via their mobile phones declined from 42.6% to 33% in 2014.
Convenience and comfort were the major reasons for people to do the shopping through mobile phones. Phone apps, clothing/accessories and music downloads were the key categories bought through mobile phones.
According to the survey of the Vietnam E-commerce and Information Technology Agency, 71% of respondents said they purchased goods via websites selling products/services last year, up 10 percentage points against 2013. The number of shoppers buying goods via social forums rose from 45% in 2013 to 53% in 2014.
However, the number of people making purchases in groups declined significantly, from 51% in 2013 to 35% in 2014. Some 25% of respondents said they shopped on websites and 13% preferred using mobile apps to shop last year.
Cash remains the most common method of payments for online shopping, making up 64%, down 10 percentage points against 2013. Money transfer dropped from 41% in 2103 to 14% in 2014, but the number of shoppers using e-pockets jumped from 8% in 2013 to 37% in 2014.