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High shipping costs among setbacks to Thai online shopping

Nov 20. 2018
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THAI consumers are stopping short of clicking “purchase” at checkout stage, with more than half (60 per cent) abandoning their online shopping carts all the time or sometimes, according to the new research from SAP, an enterprise application software. 

The SAP Consumer Propensity study focusing on online shopping behaviours reveals that high shipping costs (48 per cent) are a major deterrent. Additionally, more than a third of Thai online shoppers (39 per cent) use online shopping carts as a visual display board to compare prices with no intention to buy, and they are also put off by issues during the payment process (31 per cent), above the APAC average of 23 per cent.

 1,000 Thai consumers were surveyed to understand their online shopping preferences and motivation to complete a purchase, as part of a global study including the other APAC countries of Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, South Korea and Singapore. The results found that price is the biggest motivating factor, with promotions (59 per cent) and discounts when purchasing another item (41 per cent) encouraging shoppers to complete the transaction. Thai consumers are also on the lookout for a personalised experience, indicating that they want brands to demonstrate an understanding of their purchase history (37 per cent) and almost half are also the most interested in suggested recommendations, higher than the APAC average of 25 per cent.

 “Cart abandonment data is an excellent resource for retailers to identify friction points in the consumer journey and make improvements to the overall consumer experience. The type of items selected, time spent to complete specific actions, duration left in the cart, and the precise point of abandonment are all data that allow retailers to take informed steps to boost engagement and increase conversion,” said S Pranatharthi Haran, Head of Business, Southeast Asia, SAP Customer Experience.

 The study suggests that Thailand’s businesses may want to pay particular attention to the user experience at checkout stage. For example, retailers can provide visibility of shipping and tax prices sooner so that shoppers do not get a shock at checkout stage from the final cost that has ballooned from the original price label. Ensuring that checkout processes are simplified and can be completed in less than five steps will also encourage consumers to complete the transaction. The study also revealed the top features that Thai consumers wish for brands to enhance their shopping experience.

 Thai consumers turned out to be the most reticent towards online shopping compared to their APAC counterparts, with the results indicating that they purchase the least for almost all (five out of seven) categories of goods. This includes travel (19 per cent below average), digital goods (14 per cent below average), groceries and consumer products (19 per cent below average), entertainment (21 per cent below average) and furniture (12 per cent below average). For the remaining categories, they are also behind in terms of purchasing financial products (12 per cent below average) and fashion goods (4 per cent below average).

 “Compared to other Asian markets Thailand’s ecommerce market is in its infancy and represents a considerable opportunity to those businesses who can offer consumers a personalised and engaging experience. However, the experience needs to revolve around their lifestyle and extend beyond the purchase to ongoing service and support,” added Haran. 


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