People may tell you that the Malaysian economy is currently in a bad place. However, statistics from iPay88 reveal that people are spending more than ever on e-commerce. This is not just a minor increase in sales, but represents what might be a massive shift in consumer habits.
iPay88 is responsible for some 70 percent of online payment gateway systems in Malaysia. Which provides it with a substantial amount of data on online consumer spending.
The company noted that the number of transactions increased by 161 percent in 2016 over the previous year. It was an impressive jump from 14.6 million transactions in 2015 to 38.2 million in 2016. However, the value of these transactions was not provided; leaving us to speculate on whether there was a comparable increase in revenue for online vendors.
Executive Director of iPay88, Lim Kok Hing, also notes that the move to mobile services has helped the convenience of online shopping. He said,“online shoppers do not just shop when they are desktop-bound but using mobile phone is just as easy. Apart from that, another factor that would encourage online shopping when government starts to implement the abolishment of tariffs imposed on items being shipped into the country that are priced over RM500.”
The statistics also reveal that Malaysians tend to shop on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. Mostly between 11am and 3pm; or between 7pm and 11pm. These metrics probably say something about working habits as well. But it doesn’t hurt if it helps the overall economy and promotes spending.
Online transactions were mainly done for apparel (including footwear), jewellery, and electronics and sports equipment. iPay88 combines electronics and sports under the same category for reporting.
These statistics only take into account online transactions made using iPay88’s payment gateway; meaning that the actual number could be much higher. Especially since it is impossible to gather data on those doing business via the ‘cash-on-delivery’ method.
In other words, maybe the economy isn’t doing as badly as people seem to think it is. It could just be that consumers are spending their money in a way that doesn’t require them to interact with other human beings.