- January 26, 2021

Comscore Snapshots: online retail in the Asia-Pacific region

Alex Gevers
Alex Gevers
Senior Insights Manager

In this week’s edition of Comscore Snapshots, we look at the consumption of retail-related services in the Asia-Pacific region. Our analysis includes statistics for Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, and Vietnam.

Scope: We include websites and mobile apps that provide retail services such as apparel, consumer electronics, home furnishing, fragrance and cosmetics and sports/outdoor. Examples include Amazon and Alibaba. 

Top line observations

Table 1: Whilst we know that e-commerce is very much suited to mobile, it is important for advertisers not to disregard the desktop completely. In this table we consider the year-on-year change in visits to retail-related sites on desktop for all markets in the region and including mobile for Indonesia, Malaysia and India. The impact of recent events on the e-commerce category in the Asia-Pacific region has been varied. For six of the markets included, traffic to retail-related sites has decreased year-on-year, however, for the remaining four there have been positive increases, notably in Australia with an over 10% increase year-on-year. 

Table 2: In almost all markets, many entities have managed to reach at least 1% of online consumers and a smaller proportion of these entities have reached over 5%. The Asia-Pacific e-commerce market is highly competitive, particularly in India where we see over 60 companies reaching more than 1% of consumers. Whether this can be sustained remains to be seen. 

Table 3: The retail category in the Asia-Pacific region is dominated by large multi-national e-commerce sites which offer a wide variety of products. These large businesses have captured large market. However, as table 2 shows, there is a great deal of competition in the region and these giants will need to stay on top of their game to maintain their positions.


Table 1. Reach of retail-related websites and apps

  % reach of total digital population Year-on-Year percentage points variation
 (Nov 2020 vs Nov 2019)
Australia 65.0 11.6
China 64.8 -10.2
Hong Kong 62.9 8.9
India 89.4 -5.7
Indonesia 71.4 0.8
Japan 48.6 -3.0
Malaysia 70.6 -1.0
Singapore 38.7 -2.2
Taiwan 86.3 3.9
Vietnam 12.0 -5.4

Source: Comscore MMX Multi-Platform, Total Audience, Nov 2020, Asia-Pacific region. (N.B. desktop only for all markets except India, Indonesia and Malaysia which include mobile)

Table 2. Market competitiveness and consumer adoption of retail-related sites and apps 

  Number of retail-related websites or mobile apps that reach more than 1% of the total digital population Number of retail-related websites or mobile apps that reach more than 5% of the total digital population
Australia 24 6
China 15 4
Hong Kong 32 6
India 62 10
Indonesia 28 10
Japan 47 7
Malaysia 32 6
Singapore 20 3
Taiwan 39 15
Vietnam 8 0

Source: Comscore MMX Multi-Platform, Total Audience, Nov 2020, Asia-Pacific region. 

Table 3. Top retail-related sites and apps 

Country Entity Description
Australia Amazon Sites Multinational technology company specializing in e-commerce
China Alibaba.com Corporation Multinational technology company specializing in e-commerce
Hong Kong HKTVMALL.COM Shopping and entertainment platform
India Amazon Sites Multinational technology company specializing in e-commerce
Indonesia Shopee.co.id Multinational technology company specializing in e-commerce
Japan Amazon Sites Multinational technology company specializing in e-commerce
Malaysia Shopee.com.my Multinational technology company specializing in e-commerce
Singapore Amazon Sites Multinational technology company specializing in e-commerce
Taiwan Fubon Multimedia Technology TV, online and catalogue retail specialist
Vietnam Shopee.vn Multinational technology company specializing in e-commerce

Source: Comscore MMX Multi-Platform, Total Audience, Nov 2020, Asia-Pacific region.

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