SINGAPORE: Online shopping is fast becoming a favourite activity of Singaporeans, research shows, as the country's bricks and mortar retail sector continues to struggle.

A survey, conducted by Edelman Intelligence and Criteo, revealed that 84% of Singaporeans love to shop online and nearly a third of respondents – especially millennials and wealthier Singaporeans – make at least one purchase each week on e-commerce platforms. (For more read Warc's exclusive report: E-commerce, showrooming take Singapore by storm.)

Nearly every Singaporean questioned (95%) had used their smartphone or tablet to browse for products or services online in the past month. But while Singapore enjoys the world's highest smartphone penetration, locals were less likely to use their phone to make purchases, feeling that computers are better suited to purchasing high-value items.

Almost two thirds (65%) said they would prefer to use their computers for big ticket items such as airfares or luxury goods, and 42% would be happy to spend more than SG$500 on a single purchase compared to 16% on their mobile.

Personal income also has a direct correlation to where products are bought; those on a higher income tend to buy from Japan, the UK and Europe, whereas those on a lower income tend to buy from China. (For more 2017 retail trends in Singapore, read Warc's report: Trend Watch 2017: Singapore seeks retail revival, economic resilience.)

The data also reveals that showrooming, where shoppers browse in-store then buy online, is also a growing trend in the country. The primary incentive for showrooming is deals and promotions (69%) and cheaper products (66%) whilst free or cheaper delivery is a big consideration (43%). Almost two thirds of respondents had searched for a product online while being in a store to compare deals.

Data sourced from Warc