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Social behaviour online: Singapore’s scorecard

T.C. Seow | Feb. 13, 2012
In 2011, Singapore Internet users favoured social media, online shopping and auction sites

How have netizens in Singapore performed online? One way to look at users' social behaviours is to look into their Web surfing statistics, and that's exactly what Experian Hitwise, a leading online competitive intelligence service is doing. It has released an analysis of web searches by Singapore's Internet users last year, the results are telling.

According to Hitwise, Singaporeans are notoriously frequent users of social media sites. Last year, they emerged as the top Facebook users in the world in terms of time spent per session. Hot topics like the Singapore General Elections and breakdown in train services gave online users reasons to rant and rave, driving up traffic significantly.

Facebook continues to be popular in social networking with website traffic of almost 32 per cent. YouTube peaked at second place with almost 21 percent share of visits followed by the increasing popularity of Google+ at almost 16 percent, up from 1.2 percent in August 2011, a month after its beta site was launched.

Singaporeans have increasingly taken an interest in photography, either as leisure or professional users. It is no surprise that Instagram, a photo sharing application is also listed as one of the most popular social networking apps that Singaporeans use. The app allows users to immediately edit the look and feel of photos taken and share it with their friends through social media platforms including Facebook and Twitter.

Another trend is online shopping. Consumers turned to technology to scour for fashion instead of going to the malls. In Singapore, UK fashion brand ASOS has surfaced as the top website at 13.22 percent share of visits in the fashion and lifestyle category, outplaying Forever 21 (4.03 percent) which has a store in Singapore.  

ASOS was also the top search term driving traffic to these websites, followed by mid-range brands including H&M, Forever 21 and Uniqlo alongside luxury brands like Kate Spade, Louis Vuitton, Longchamp, Prada and Gucci (in 12 rolling weeks ending 31st December 2011).

Who doesn't love a good bargain? Known to be fond of discounts, Singaporeans are embracing the new group coupon-buying craze. Groupon Singapore and are the top two deals aggregators, accounting for 35.25 percent of website traffic of sub-category rewards and directories.

Aside from fashion and lifestyle products, Singaporeans have flocked online to search for information, news and reviews about these gadgets. Most of them preferred reading about Apple products with 13.24 percent share of visits for the Apple website. This is closely followed by Lenovo at almost 11 percent in the Computers category.

In the Electronics category, Apple remains the top website Singaporeans go to with 18 percent share of visits. Despite its 9.34 percent decrease in share of visits from 2010, the local Apple Singapore is gaining ground at 8.04 percent of website traffic from 0 percent in 2010. Other top websites in this category include Gizmodo, Sony Singapore and Samsung Singapore.


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