The month of Ramadan usually entails a change in lifestyle, as Muslim consumers alter their daily habits to spend more time on prayer, fasting, doing good deeds and purchasing gifts for Hari Raya celebrations.
iPrice Group, a Malaysian meta-shopping website, conducted a survey to understand the behaviour of online consumers during Ramadan. It studied online traffic from more than 350,000 sessions on iPrice.my between 27 May to 11 June 2017, and compared it with data from the regular period between 22 April and 7 May 2017. iPrice also analysed historical data taken from more than 300,000 online sessions between 6 June to 12 July 2016.
Using the data it gathered, iPrice drew four conclusions on the behaviour of Malaysian online shoppers during Ramadan.
According to the study, Malaysians remain avid shoppers during Ramadan, making online purchases as early as 4 am. By 5 am, iPrice noted a 90.1% increase in online traffic compared to the non-Ramadan period. The increase in online traffic persists even after the completion of morning prayers, indicating that Malaysians continue to remain active online before leaving for work or school.
In addition to starting the day by shopping online, Malaysians also use their lunch break to conduct online purchases. iPrice’s study reported a 21% increase in activity during lunch time, with traffic peaking at 3 pm. According to iPrice, this is because consumers are awake much earlier during Ramadan. Hence, they will only be most active by late afternoon rather than 10 pm, which is the usual time during regular seasons.
From 3 to 7 pm, the study indicated that online traffic dropped by 9.7% as Malaysians break fast. While consumers carry on shopping in the evening, iPrice said the number remains lower as compared to the previous month.
Findings show that Malaysians are expected to shop most during the third week of Ramadan, and iPrice predicts a surge in last-minute online shoppers by the fourth week. This is a result of local delivery services being able to deliver products purchased within the same day as well as the availability of efficient payment modes.
However, iPrice’s study notes that online traffic will decrease on Hari Raya itself as Malaysians prioritise their family and friends during the festive season. It claims that online traffic will pick up once again after Hari Raya this year, as Malaysians would have received their “Duit Raya”. This is based on the data collected in 2016, during which consumers shopped online after Hari Raya.