October 25, 2014 08:19
Korean consumers are more enthusiastic online shoppers than their Chinese and Japanese counterparts, according to a study by IBM.
Surveying 30,554 adults in 16 countries, the company found that Chinese consumers are avid users of social media, location tracking services and smartphones, while the Japanese consumers prefer traditional offline shops.
Asked where they made their last purchase, 48 percent of Korean respondents pointed to online shopping, far more than the average of 27 percent in the 16 surveyed countries and the 32 percent in Japan.
But the Chinese came a close second with 44 percent.
However, Chinese consumers are the most active in sharing information about their purchases with other buyers on the Internet, with 59 percent saying they leave online reviews of products they bought, compared to 48 percent of Koreans and 41 percent of Japanese.
Chinese consumers are also active in "showrooming," whereby they check out a product in an offline store but then buy it online. Some 22.6 percent said they practice showrooming, compared to only 12.3 percent of Koreans and 8.8 percent of Japanese.
The Chinese are also willing to sacrifice their privacy to help them shop more efficiently, with 62 percent saying they let vendors keep track of their location to get discount coupons or other information.
Only 28 percent of Korean consumers and 20 percent of Japanese were willing to let vendors track them.
Asked what has the greatest impact on their shopping patterns, Chinese cited reviews by other customers with 80 percent. But in Korea only 54 percent base their decision on consumer while about the same percentage said their purchases are influenced by the descriptions posted by the manufacturer.
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