Why online shopping is booming in the Philippines

November 7, 2018 - 3:00 PM
Christmas tree
The 40-foot Christmas tree at Robinsons Manila in Ermita. (Interaksyon/Bernard Testa)

A study on social media conversations on shopping during the Christmas season has revealed Filipinos’ growing interest in online shopping in recent years.

Social media monitoring and intelligence firm Meltwater found in a recent study that the Philippines provided 30 percent of the social media buzz on online shopping in the Christmas season and special holiday sales for Black Friday and Single’s Day as early as September.

The Philippines ranked second just behind neighbor Indonesia, from which 57 percent of the shopping buzz came.

The study also found that e-commerce websites Qoo10 and Lazada are the most talked about online shopping hubs in the country.

That Filipinos could create as much buzz for online shopping comes to no surprise as it becomes a household staple.

E-commerce on the rise in the Philippines

Online shopping has been a growing craze in the Philippines in the past few years. A study conducted as early as 2015 found that 9 out of 10 Filipinos preferred online shopping.

The same study found that convenience, cheaper prices and special deals were the leading reasons for the respondents’ preference for online shopping.

The market has rapidly grown since then. According to Eshopworld.com, there are at least 37.7 million e-commerce users in the country in 2018 from the 30.2 million estimated in 2016. The number is expected to rise to 53.8 million by 2022.

Statista’s e-commerce outlook meanwhile estimates that there are currently at least 47.3 million e-commerce users in November 2018, yielding a revenue of $840 million.

A report published in May 2018 found that despite its growing popularity, the Philippines lags in terms of growth of e-commerce sales in the Southeast Asian region.