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Insights & Events
12 March, 2018
Southeast Asia is grabbing the attention of app advertisers all over the globe. With internet penetration growing at an impressive rate and only 53% of its combined population online today, the region has huge potential.
The main driver of this growth is internet use via mobile. SEA is a mobile-first and often mobile-only region, with 94% of internet users going online via their smartphones. Most developed countries first accessed the internet from desktop computer. They became accustomed to the desktop experience in their working and personal lives before the advent of the smartphone. During this time, Southeast Asia had a relatively low level of economic development, making a desktop revolution unfeasible. The availability and affordability of sophisticated mobile devices enabled SEA to leapfrog into mobile technology, with most users first exposure to the internet being via smartphone. The result is a population that almost exclusively accesses the internet for all manner of activities, via mobile.
In light of this, we wanted to provide insight into SEA’s specific consumption habits giving you the knowledge on how best to target this audience.
SEA consumers spend more time online on mobile devices than the rest of the world, with an average of 3.6 hours per day, compared to 2 hours per day in the US, 1.8 hours per day in the UK and 1 hour per day in Japan. On a more granular level, Thailand users spend the most time accessing the internet on mobile with 4.2 hours per day, followed by Indonesia at 3.9 hours per day.
Millenials in this region spend less time online than other demographics, though they spend the most time on social media sites and watching videos.
The best time to engage SEA users is during commuter hours. A Deloitte study showed that SEA users most commonly use their devices during travel, specifically on public transport. This is especially prevalent in Singapore where 70% of respondents use their mobile devices during travel.
Takeaways: When allocating your mobile ad spend for the entire region, skewing to Thailand or Indonesia can allow you to capitalize on a very active audience. If targeting Singapore, consider commuter hours when users are most likely to be engaged. When targeting a millennial demographic, focus on social and video ad units to meet users on the platforms they are most active on.
Android reigns over Apple in most SEA countries. A recent study of SEA users found 80% preferred Android over Apple. This preference is driven by underlying economic factors, such as national wealth across SEA countries. With Android devices being available at various price points, compared to Apple products only existing at a premium price point, it drives SEA users to purchase Android over Apple.
Takeaways: When thinking about your SEA strategy it’s good to consider which device is dominant in that specific country. For example for iOS apps, a campaign targeted at developed countries like Singapore may have greater success than in emerging markets like Indonesia and Thailand where Android is more prevalent.
In comparison to the rest of the world, users in the SEA region have a high tendency to make purchases via mobile devices. 48% of SEA users chose mobile when making a purchase, compared to 39% in the US. This can be attributed to SEA being a mobile-first and often mobile-only region.
While there is no data for SEA specifically, a recent study found that Asian users spend 40% more on in-app purchases than the rest of the world in e-commerce apps, with a monthly average of $0.70 per user per app. And it doesn’t just stop at e-commerce! APAC users have a 75% higher spend and a 85% higher average purchase than the global user for in-app gaming purchases.
Takeaways: When defining your marketing strategy it is essential to understand the differences in in-app spending behaviours across different geographic regions. In-app spending continues to present significant opportunity, with SEA being particularly fruitful.
In order to tap into the success of the SEA region it’s important to understand their users’ specific consumption habits. This allows you to tailor your app marketing strategy giving your app the best chance at success within this market.
Engage Mpire to reach your apps future users in Southeast Asia, or wherever they are in the digital world.