According to the recently released Microsoft Digital Advertising Solutions’ Consumer Electronics Survey, gadget enthusiasts in India are increasingly going online to research their next consumer electronics purchase. The survey shows that 83 per cent of respondent in India cite the Internet as their most used resource for this purpose followed by newspapers at 56 per cent. On the Internet, portals (55 per cent) are the second most used resources followed by search engines (44 per cent) and product review websites (41 per cent).
The survey was carried out on nearly 10,000 MSN/Windows Live service users across 10 markets – Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan and Thailand – in a poll conducted by Synovate during August-October 2007 for Microsoft Digital Advertising Solutions.
According to the study, the Internet is the preferred choice in India because consumers can find the latest available models (67 per cent) and compare product features (65 per cent), can compare prices (62 per cent) and because they can do it any time (61 per cent). As expected, quality (61 per cent) and price (61 per cent) were the key criteria for purchasing consumer electronics rather than the brand name (37 per cent).
80 per cent of respondents from India felt music was an important part of their lives. 77 per cent felt that a quality home entertainment experience was important and 74 per cent felt that they just could not do without mobile communication.
Commenting on the study, Celia Fan, Regional Media Analyst, Microsoft Digital Advertising Solutions, Asia Pacific, Greater China & Japan, said, “Today, instead of making a trip to the mall for product guidance, or settling for a product choice based on limited reviews from family and friends – smarter consumers are conducting research on their own online, where a multitude of product comparisons, reviews and recommendations are freely available.”
“The online medium today empowers a lot of consumers in research and guidance for their purchases. Consumers in India by nature generally prefer to go by recommendations and today they have access to a lot more people and communities on the internet for advice,” added Vineet Gupta, Marketing Manager - India, Microsoft Digital Advertising Solutions.
The study further reveals that 77 per cent of respondents intend to buy at least one consumer electronic equipment in the next 12 months. Products most often researched by the respondents include mobile phones, laptop computers and digital cameras. Laptop, mobile phones and MP3 players are among the top three preferred electronic products bought online by the users in India.
Ownership of mobile phones / PDAs / smart phones in India among the respondents are high – 91 per cent, and the intention of purchasing them in the coming 12 months is also the highest, where 37 per cent intend to buy a mobile phone/PDA/ smartphone in the next 12 months.
The purchase decisions for electronics are likely to be influenced by the children in Indian households. As seen in almost all markets, (43 per cent) of respondents said kids have a lot of influence in swaying purchase decisions for ‘household-sharing’ items such as computers and TVs.