Internet Spending Habits In Singapore: Top Trends And Essential Predictions

Internet Spending Habits In Singapore

Why are internet spending habits in Singapore changing? This concise exploration provides an up-to-date snapshot of how, where, and why Singapore’s internet spending habits patterns are evolving. Expect to understand the trends and numbers defining this digital transformation.

Key Takeaways

  • Singapore’s e-commerce market is booming, with a projected growth of $10 billion by 2026, driven by mobile commerce and significant adoption across all demographics.
  • A blend of higher financial capability influences Singaporean online consumer behaviour, the post-pandemic shift towards e-commerce, and the powerful impact of social media on purchasing decisions.
  • Emerging trends like voice search, extended reality, influencer marketing, and sustainable shopping are shaping the future of e-commerce. At the same time, omnichannel retail strategies and data analytics are crucial for business success.

Singapore’s Internet Spending Habits in Online Shopping 

Singapore's Internet Spending Habits in Online Shopping 

Singapore’s internet spending habits scene is undergoing a significant digital revolution. With over 59.05% of the population participating in online shopping in 2022, the nation’s embrace of the digital marketplace is remarkable.

From Gen Zs to mature consumers, online shopping and internet spending habits has penetrated every age demographic, painting a picture of a nation unified under the e-commerce banner.

A staggering 90% of Singaporeans prefer shopping on e-commerce platforms such as Amazon, Shopee, and Lazada, with social media trailing as the next preferred channel for online shoppers at 73%.

The nation’s love for online shopping has only grown over the years, with the e-commerce market, driven by online retailers, projected to reach a staggering value of $10 billion by 2026.

Mobile vs. Desktop Shopping

The introduction of smartphones has dramatically changed Singaporeans’ internet spending habits, as well as the behaviour of internet users. With 51% of Singaporeans preferring to use their mobile phone or mobile devices only for online shopping, smartphones have supplanted laptops and desktop computers as the go-to devices for e-commerce.

The mobile commerce market, valued at $3 billion in 2020, is projected to be more than half double by 2025, reaching a whopping $7 billion. This shows that m-commerce, purchasing products and services online through a mobile phone or device, is not just a fleeting trend but a significant shift in consumer and business behaviour.

Cross-Border E-Commerce

As Singaporean consumers expand their global connections in Southeast Asia, they’re exploring beyond local retailers to purchase online from international brands. This has led to a remarkable increase in cross-border commerce, with Singaporeans aged between 55 and 64 leading this trend.

However, such growth doesn’t come without challenges. Singaporean businesses engaging in cross-border e-commerce face high logistical costs, a potential hurdle to overcome as this trend continues to rise.

Factors Driving Internet Spending Habits in Singapore

Factors Driving Internet Spending Habits in Singapore

Various elements contribute to the rapid increase in internet spending habits in Singapore. Notably, a rise in the median graduate salary from S$3,700 in 2020 to S$4,200 in 2022 suggests an increase in financial capability among younger consumers, potentially fuelling online expenditure.

Beyond financial capability, other digital services and platforms also play a crucial role in shaping consumer spending trends. Search engines and social media have considerable influence over online shopping behaviours, underlining digital marketing platforms’ role in guiding consumer spending trends and the growing importance of digital services to online shoppers.

The Impact of COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has unquestionably influenced online shopping and internet spending habits in Singapore, propelling a swift transition from physical stores to e-commerce. During the lockdown, e-commerce sales and usage spiked by 80%, with 45% of Singaporeans expressing a preference for buying online and shopping over visiting physical brick-and-mortar stores.

This shift was reflected in the significant increase in monthly web visits and traffic to e-commerce websites, which saw a 35% boost in monthly web visits in 2020 compared to the previous year.

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Essential items such as groceries and personal hygiene products were predominantly stocked up by Singaporeans during the early days of the lockdown, highlighting the pivotal role of online shopping during the pandemic.

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Social Media’s Role in Online Shopping

Social media platforms active social media users, also known as social media sites, have risen as a pivotal force in shaping the purchasing decisions of Singaporean customers giving consumers.

With active social media users providing reviews and recommendations for their online experiences and purchases and keeping consumers informed about online shops to support and avoid, social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram have become famous for online shopping in Singapore.

Gen Z shoppers, in particular, have shown a significant preference for online shopping and internet spending habits, with 72% favouring it over traditional retail, such as brick-and-mortar stores.

This digitally savvy and native generation is an avid adopter of new shopping experiences provided through social media sites, contributing to the rise of social commerce.

Internet Spending Habits in Singapore: Emerging Trends in E-Commerce Industry

Internet Spending Habits in Singapore: Emerging Trends in E-Commerce Industry

Singapore’s e-commerce scene is poised for thrilling technological breakthroughs. Voice search, speculated to achieve a market size of $27.16 billion by 2026, is becoming increasingly popular, marking a significant shift in how consumers interact with online platforms.

Extended reality (XR) is set to follow suit, with brands like IKEA integrating augmented reality (AR) to their physical stores and online experiences that allow customers to visualize products in their homes through an application, enhancing the online shopping experience.

The Rise of Influencer Marketing

In today’s social-media-driven world, influencer marketing is becoming increasingly popular in Singapore. Marketing campaigns featuring celebrities and brands and engaging online sales events are captivating Singaporean consumers and shaping their shopping and online purchase behaviour.

Micro and nano influencers, in particular, are becoming increasingly valuable in influencer marketing. Despite their smaller followings, they often achieve higher conversion rates than their more famous counterparts, demonstrating the power of relatability and trust in shaping consumer behaviour.

Green Consumerism and Sustainable Shopping

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As awareness of environmental issues increases, Singapore is seeing a rise in green consumerism and sustainable shopping. Particularly among younger consumers, there is a substantial shift towards eco-consciousness, with 51% of Gen Z shoppers claiming they spend more on sustainable items.

Upcycling, creating products from materials that would otherwise be discarded, is gaining momentum in the e-commerce sector. This reflects a growing number of businesses focusing on sustainability, catering to the rising demand among consumers for eco-friendly products.

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Internet Spending Habits: Challenges and Opportunities for E-Commerce Businesses in Singapore

Internet Spending Habits: Challenges and Opportunities for E-Commerce Businesses in Singapore

Although Singapore’s e-commerce sector is increasing, it presents several hurdles for businesses transitioning from physical stores to online buying and internet spending habits.

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However, these challenges also present opportunities. For instance, e-commerce businesses with physical stores in Singapore can apply for the Productivity Solutions Grant (PSG) to enhance their productivity and improve their online retail infrastructure.

Subscription and loyalty programs are increasingly essential for any ecommerce e-commerce success. These programs offer flexible policies to subscribers and provide businesses with a consistent customer base, contributing to long-term success.

Adapting to Evolving Consumer Expectations

E-commerce strategies must adapt to evolving consumer expectations. An omnichannel retail strategy, which provides shoppers with a seamless shopping experience across different platforms, is critical.

Businesses implementing robust omnichannel strategies have an 89% higher customer retention rate.

Immersive technologies and artificial intelligence are key components of these strategies. By promoting enhanced customer experiences, these technologies and artificial intelligence are helping businesses meet their customers’ rapidly evolving expectations.

Leveraging Data Analytics and Technology

In today’s data-driven world, ecommerce e-commerce businesses must harness data analytics and technology to seize expanding online market opportunities. A 15.3% increase in the total digital marketing and advertising spend by Singapore companies reflects the growing opportunities in the online sales market.

Beyond advertising, technology also plays an integral and significant role in streamlining trade processes. For instance, the National Trade Platform enables easy access to secure data sharing and analytics, while partnerships with software developers reduce manual errors and improve e-commerce trade efficiency.

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Internet Spending Habits Tips for Singaporean Consumers to Shop Smart Online

Internet Spending Habits Tips for Singaporean Consumers to Shop Smart Online

As Singaporean consumers increasingly turn to internet spending habits, they must understand how to make an online purchase wisely.

Comparing prices and reading reviews from online shoppers can help consumers make informed purchasing decisions about people shopping online and have internet spending habits and elsewhere while ensuring safe and secure transactions, which can protect them from fraud and data breaches when they purchase online.

Using price comparison websites, shopping apps, search engines, and aggregators can help consumers find the best deals available in-store and online, ensuring that they do not overpay for products. Additionally, subscribing to newsletters and loyalty programs offered by online retailers can provide consumers with exclusive coupons and advance notice of upcoming sales.

Comparing Prices and Reviews

Price comparison websites are indispensable for savvy internet spending habits. By comparing prices across different online platforms, consumers can ensure they are getting the best value.

In addition to comparing prices, utilizing customer reviews, ratings, and testimonials is another essential tool for online shoppers. These can provide valuable insights into product quality and value, helping consumers make informed purchasing decisions.

Staying Safe and Secure Online

Securing online purchases and transactions is vital to safeguard consumers and businesses from fraud and data breaches. While online shopping offers unparalleled convenience, it also comes with risks. Singaporean consumers and more enterprises are advised to use credit cards over debit cards for online purchases due to their convenience and added security against fraud.

Reviewing bank statements and transaction histories regularly can help users swiftly identify unauthorized charges. Furthermore, enabling email or SMS notifications for banking transactions adds a layer of security for both users and online shoppers.


Singapore’s internet spending habits are rapidly evolving from the thriving mobile commerce market to the rise of influencer marketing and green consumerism. As e-commerce businesses adapt to these emerging trends and consumer expectations, Singaporean consumers are also becoming savvier and shopping online, leveraging technology and data to shop smart.

With the continued growth of e-commerce, online shopping in Singapore’s future looks promising.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are some emerging trends in Singapore’s e-commerce industry?

Singapore’s e-commerce services online industry is seeing emerging trends such as voice search, extended reality, livestream shopping, personalized shopping apps, marketing, brand name, influencer marketing, brand name, and green consumerism. These trends are shaping the future of ecommerce and online shopping in Singapore.

How has COVID-19 impacted online shopping and internet spending habits in Singapore?

COVID-19 has led to a significant increase in the widespread use of online shopping and internet spending habits in Singapore. There was an 80% surge in e-commerce usage, more than half that during the lockdown. This shows a clear shift towards online shopping due to the pandemic.

How can I shop smart online in Singapore?

To shop smart online in Singapore, compare prices and reviews, subscribe to newsletters and loyalty programs, and ensure secure transactions. This will help you make informed purchase decisions and get the best deals.

What are the challenges and opportunities for e-commerce businesses in Singapore?

In Singapore, e-commerce businesses face challenges with high logistical costs for cross-border e-commerce websites. Still, there are opportunities to take advantage of government grants, subscription and payment options, loyalty programs and payment options, and to leverage data analytics services and technology. Consider exploring these opportunities to overcome the challenges and thrive in the e-commerce market.

How is technology influencing online shopping and internet spending habits in Singapore?

Technology is significantly impacting the online shopping experience in Singapore through mobile commerce, social media influence, immersive technologies, and data analytics, making it more convenient, easy to access and personalized for consumers to shop online here.

About the Author

Tom Koh

Tom is the CEO and Principal Consultant of MediaOne, a leading digital marketing agency. He has consulted for MNCs like Canon, Maybank, Capitaland, SingTel, ST Engineering, WWF, Cambridge University, as well as Government organisations like Enterprise Singapore, Ministry of Law, National Galleries, NTUC, e2i, SingHealth. His articles are published and referenced in CNA, Straits Times, MoneyFM, Financial Times, Yahoo! Finance, Hubspot, Zendesk, CIO Advisor.


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