Retail sales spike in last months of 2015 as Visa cardholders embrace eCommerce


Increasing popularity of international online and festive season sales drive eCommerce growth, with mobile purchases on the rise

Singapore - Visa cardholders in Singapore have spent more during international events such as Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Single’s Day as well as the festive Christmas period compared to the same period in 2014. The spike in consumer spending is driven by the popularity of international online and year-end festivities sales as Singaporean consumers splashed out more money, showing a double digit increase of close to 20 per cent as compared to last year.

International events such as Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Single’s Day have extended to the traditional Christmas spending period. Official Visa data showed that digital savvy consumers are now shopping for Christmas as early as November.

“Based on VisaNet data, 20 per cent more Visa cardholders in Singapore are shopping online during these two months as compared to the same period in 2014 and there is also 20 per cent increase in number of transactions. Single’s Day has the highest growth out of all the international events at 28 per cent year-on-year1,” said Ms Ooi Huey Tyng, Visa Country Manager for Singapore and Brunei.

According to Visa’s 2015 Consumer Payment Attitudes Survey2, more than 70 per cent of consumers in Singapore shop online at least once a month, compared to 59 per cent in the previous year. Singapore is also one of the leading markets in Southeast Asia in terms of online shopping uptake, well ahead of the regional average of 68 per cent.

Respondents to the Study, which polled 500 people in Singapore, cited convenience (45 per cent) and competitive pricing (31 per cent) as key motivations for shopping online, and also reported spending an average of 41 minutes on each online shopping session.

“In recent years, we have seen a blurring of lines between brick and motar and online shopping. However, online shopping continues to grow much faster than traditional face-to-face shopping. Based on VisaNet, 20 per cent of eCommerce transactions are cross-border transactions and the top corridors are United States and United Kingdom3. For domestic eCommerce transactions, transportation, which include luxury liners, cruises, has the largest spike in number of transactions, six times more than in 2014. We also see that Singaporeans spend the most on air travel expenses during these two months, up by seven per cent as compared to the same period in 2014,” added Tyng.

Mobile purchases on the rise

Singapore consumers are also warming to mCommerce, with half of the online shoppers surveyed choosing to make their purchases via mobile device within the last year. 50 per cent of survey respondents from Singapore say they regularly shop via mobile, with 20 per cent preferring mobile commerce over online channels.

Top categories for mobile and online purchases4

Top Purchases via Mobile5
- Ground Transportation – 53 percent
- Software, apps and app-related – 40 percent
- Digital content – 37 percent

Top Purchases via Online6
- Bill payment – 46 percent
- Travel – 43 percent
- Movie tickets- 39 percent


According to respondents, the categories that are increasingly being purchased via mobile devices in Singapore include movie tickets (35 per cent), food delivery (32 per cent) and fashion and accessories (20 per cent). Almost half of the respondents say they began making purchases via their mobile devices only a year ago.

As eCommerce and mCommerce become increasingly popular among Singapore consumers, the Study also shows that there is a growing preference for the use of payment cards overall rather than cash (76 per cent). This is a significant increase as compared to 2014 where 58 per cent of respondents prefer to use their payment cards instead of cash. In addition, almost half (49 per cent) of respondents report having more payment cards in their wallet now, compared to five years ago.


1 VisaNet data as of Nov and Dec 2015
2 The Visa Consumer Payments Attitude Survey 2015 was conducted by Acorn Marketing & Research Consultants with 3000 consumers, aged 18 to 60 years, and across 6 markets-Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam and The Philippines - in June and July 2015.
3 VisaNet data as of Nov and Dec 2015
4 Figures are based on purchases made by respondents in the past 6 months at the time of the survey.
5 2015 Visa Consumer Payment Attitudes Survey
6 2015 Visa Consumer Payment Attitudes Survey


About Visa

Visa Inc. (NYSE: V) is a global payments technology company that connects consumers, businesses, financial institutions, and governments in more than 200 countries and territories to fast, secure and reliable electronic payments. We operate one of the world's most advanced processing networks — VisaNet — that is capable of handling more than 65,000 transaction messages a second, with fraud protection for consumers and assured payment for merchants. Visa is not a bank and does not issue cards, extend credit, or set rates and fees for consumers. Visa's innovations; however, enable its financial institution customers to offer consumers more choices: pay now with debit, pay ahead of time with prepaid or pay later with credit products. For more information, visit and @VisaNews.