Today: December 1, 2015, 5:31 pm

Japan online retail market: 6.1% of all retail sales by 2016
Consumer Attitudes and Online Retail Dynamics in Japan - a new market research report on 2014-04-25 10:48:04
The early adoption of 3G mobile technology meant that the price of fixed internet connections, where most online shopping takes place, was initially very high. Government investment in infrastructure means prices have come down and the penetration rate of fixed broadband internet subscriptions is increasing, but marketers must be prepared to target the large number of consumers who access the internet through their phones.

While consumer spending in Japan is recovering from the global financial crisis and the 2011 tsunami, these events have accelerated the evolution of online shopping, driving more consumers online in the search for low cost products and encouraging the Japanese to be more open with their public personas on social networks.

Consumers have been reacting to the effects of the global recession, including the following recovery period, on their discretionary spending and retail markets have been no exception. While the country by country market changes have varied, nowhere has been left totally untouched. This report quantitatively examines the components of change in the market by looking at historic and future growth patterns, including how changes in consumer behaviour have affected the online retail sector for different product categories.

Japanese consumers, who are known to use the internet extensively, find online shopping too complex or prefer to physically examine products before purchasing, which impacts the online retail market. In addition to selling the product, marketing campaigns in Japan will therefore have to convince consumers of the benefits online shopping offers.

Early and widespread use of third-generation mobile phones in Japan has limited demand for fast fixed connections at home. Furthermore, high costs when broadband internet first became available drove low initial adoption rates. While prices have come down significantly, use of Fixed Broadband connections in Japan lags behind other countries.

While smartphones are widely used in Japan, opportunities for m-commerce are more limited. Factors such as online payment security, a preference for purchase using laptops or computers and the desire to evaluate products physically before purchasing means that shopping using mobiles remains a niche activity.

Social Media in Japan is evolving: previously, Japanese consumers were reticent to share public details online. However, the growing popularity of Facebook in the country shows that the division between private and public online personas is disappearing.

Japanese consumers still have concerns regarding the security of online payments. They therefore expect online retailers to offer a number of alternative payment systems, including cash on delivery and payment at Konbini stores.

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