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Apr 11, 2021 / 11:29

Vietnamese rural consumers increase online shopping

As people in rural and suburban areas account for 63% of the population, and 60% of the country's GDP, they have the potential to drive business growth.

Nearly half of internet users in rural areas have got online shopping activities, especially they dig in information about products through chatting with the store, watching live shopping or reading reviews before deciding to buy them.

Vietnamese rural consumers increase online shopping. Photo: nongthonviet.com.vn

The latest report conducted by Facebook and GroupM Vietnam revealed that the habits and behavior of online consumers in rural areas have changed drastically.

The surveyed people said that Facebook is the most chosen online shopping channel, followed by popular e-commerce platforms like Shopee, Tiki, Sendo.

With 91% of people, Vietnamese consumers in rural areas are relying on the internet for shopping rather than traditional channels. The number of internet users is higher than television (TV) audience (86%). 

Daily internet usage continues to increase (149 minutes) per head and nearly double TV time (87 minutes). Among consumers watching TV, up to 47% of people also used smartphones to chat or access social networks, the report wrote.

Using social media is the most popular internet activity with 92% of the people. Facebook is the most widely used social network with 97%.

In addition to using social media, rural consumers watch video online (74%), play online games (34%), and shop on the internet (14%). Nearly 50% of rural users chose Facebook Watch as the favorite channel for online video.

Recommendations for brands

 Local residents are shopping at a store of Phuc Tho district, Hanoi. Photo: Thu Huong

It is estimated that from 2020-2025, the monthly spending of fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) in rural areas will increase by 7% on average annually, faster than that in grade-one urban areas (4%). Over 70% of FMCG categories haven’t been chosen by a number of rural consumers, representing an opportunity to increase the number of consumers, according to the report.

To catch up with the trend, the report recommended that advertisers should combine between online and traditional communication channels to ensure maximum reach to potential consumers and achieve cost effectiveness.

In order to connect with consumers more deeply, brands can roll out a variety of activities on their online media channels from social media, including online videos and promotional content with the participation of celebrities and gaming.

According to local experts, the online sales channel will be an opportunity to increase product penetration in rural areas, especially when the traditional channel has not been able to compete in convenience for busy consumers.

Khoi Le, Facebook's Business Director in Vietnam, emphasized that how to attract more new consumers is always an issue that business managers are looking for solutions. 

“As the number of new users in big cities is running out and the competition among brands is becoming saturated, the attraction of users in the second and third tier satellite cities, and rural areas becomes increasingly important,” he said.