Rakuten Marketing Research Reveals APAC Consumer Intentions Ahead Christmas Present Giving

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Leading digital advertising business Rakuten Marketing has announced the launch of its new 2019 Consumer Holiday Shopping Research, delving into the planned spending habits of consumers ahead of this year’s holiday season.

The research surveyed 2000 consumers across four key APAC markets including Australia, South Korea, China and Singapore with the findings revealing a number of key trends that will help marketers plan for this holiday season.

Consumers are officially in holiday shopping mode.

When asked to describe their approach to holiday gift shopping, most Australian (28 per cent) and South Korean (30 per cent) consumers described themselves as ‘holiday shoppers’, making purchases only when November hits.

For Chinese consumers, this is not the case with 38 per cent considering themselves ‘sporadic shoppers’, having planned for the gift giving season throughout the year.

Most Singaporeans (29 per cent) label themselves ‘bargain hunters’, concentrating their holiday shopping around big sale events such as Cyber Weekend and Single’s Day.

Despite uncertain economic conditions, 42 per cent of Australians remain optimistic indicating no significant change in their plans for spending these holidays.

However, 49 per cent of South Koreans indicated they will spend less money on gifts this holiday season and 36 per cent of Chinese and Singaporean consumers have already reduced their spending during the holiday gift shopping periods.

On average, the majority of consumers across all surveyed countries are looking to spend approximately $100 – $499 AUD on holiday gifts.

Most Singaporeans and South Koreans are looking to buy gifts for three to five people (44 per cent and 45 per cent respectively) whilst Australian consumers are looking to buy for between five to ten people (65 per cent) and Chinese consumers only buying for one or two (50 per cent).

Interestingly for advertisers, Chinese consumers indicated they have the highest appreciation for holiday advertising with 44 per cent saying they find holiday advertisements very helpful when purchasing gifts.

On the other end of the spectrum, only 15 per cent of Australians find holiday advertising useful and a further 23 per cent indicated they find it annoying.

However, of the ads they do see, consumers are predominantly aligned across APAC on the type of advertising they find most beneficial.

All countries indicated that pricing strategies such as sales, discounts, coupons and vouchers are the most influential factors when making purchasing decisions (averaging 33 per cent across APAC).

When it comes to converting gift purchases, consumers in Singapore, South Korea and China prefer to make transactions via mobile (31 per cent, 45 per cent and 51 per cent respectively).

The top apps used in each country to make these mobile purchases include WeChat in China (69 per cent), Facebook in Singapore (45 per cent) and Kakao Talk in South Korea (40 per cent).

Australian consumers still prefer to purchase in-store (52 per cent) with 49 per cent indicating they don’t use mobile apps at all to make gift purchases.

Rakuten Marketing international managing director, Anthony Capano commented: “Marketers must remember that ‘shopper profiles’ change at this time of year – instead of buying for themselves, people are buying for others.

“For brands this means engaging audiences outside of the traditional customer base, often through new tactics and channels.”

He added: “Now more than ever it’s important for brands and advertisers to connect online with offline to make the most seamless shopping experience for consumers.

“This new research by Rakuten Marketing aims to give marketers the best relevant, up-to-date information so that they can create effective and efficient strategies this gift-giving season.”

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