Why Asian millennials are embracing recommerce and what they are buying

Robert Stockdill

Robert Stockdill

Millennials more than ever are recognising the importance of buying pre-owned items as a means to embracing a more sustainable lifestyle. 

Research released by Asian resale platform Carousell’s Carousell Media Group and IAB Southeast Asia and India shows 95 per cent of millennials in Southeast Asia and Hong Kong believe buying pre-owned items is more sustainable – and 50 per cent feel “very strongly” about it.

The research covered more than 3500 consumers across Carousell’s five markets – Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Vietnam, and the Philippines, where recommerce is booming.  

“The explosive growth of recommerce is feeding two key needs of consumers today,” said Miranda Dimopoulos, regional CEO at IAB SEA+India, “the demand for sustainability and the hunt for a good deal. This juncture of ethics and e-commerce creates fertile ground for retail media because of the interplay among customer data, closed-loop reporting, and real-world results that generate more and better data.” 

The research also showed that millennials overall care more about social issues such as sustainability, social responsibility, and climate change, compared with consumers aged over 35.

Consumers in the older age group said they are significantly more motivated by promotions and sales when it comes to purchasing a luxury item, whereas under 35s will save up to buy a particular item.

The most popular categories in recommerce are gaming, mobile, gadgets or accessories, followed by computer accessories and home and kitchen appliances – all categories that facilitate entertainment, communication, virtual working and cooking as people are spending more time at home due to Covid-19.

Why Asian millennials are embracing recommerce and what they are buying
Carousell’s research has lifted the lid on millennial behaviour with recommerce.

“This research captures a highly-engaged millennial audience who are in the browsing and buying mindset, motivated by a great deal and their belief that purchasing pre-owned is more sustainable,” said CMD MD JJ Eatswood.

“In addition, when we took a closer look at the luxury category, we found that half of all respondents bought luxury items during the past year. In Vietnam, 72 per cent of respondents bought at least one luxury item and 33 per cent bought more than three.”

Eastwood said recommerce has become synonymous with sustainability and the research shows how important this has become to young people across the region.

“This presents a unique opportunity for brands to win the hearts and minds of this core consumer segment around issues they care deeply about.”

Footnote: The Carousell Media Group is the media arm of the online marketplace Carousell Group and offers advertising solutions for brands and agencies across the brands Carousell in Singapore and Hong Kong, Mudah in Malaysia, Cho Tot in Vietnam and India’s OneKyat. The IAB SEA+India is the not-for-profit association connecting the digital industry across the region and collaborating with partners throughout the digital landscape. Its membership includes brands, publishers, agencies and tech platforms. 

Main image credit: @try2benice via Twenty20

Robert Stockdill

Robert Stockdill

Robert Stockdill is a content writer with more than 30 years of experience in five countries. His style has built upon award-winning success in news and features in the print media to leadership in digital communication, spanning news websites, social media, magazines, brochures, and contributing to books. Recognising the devastating impact of consumer behaviour on the planet and wanting to help make a difference Robert launched Viable.Earth as a platform to celebrate positive contributions by brands, companies and individuals towards reducing environmental impact and improve sustainability – especially in the fields of fashion, beauty, food, lifestyle, and transportation.


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