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Japan's E-Commerce Market:
Fast Delivery, Low-Cost, Long Tail Goods Have Become the Norm

Ozaki:

When it comes to purchasing at low prices, customers often use point services. The survey shows that Rakuten has an overwhelming lead in this regard. Among survey participants who have used a point service, the T Point shared loyalty program was almost even with that of Rakuten but, among the services that the participants primarily use, the Rakuten Super Points program was far ahead of the competition. Rakuten users also indicated that their reason for purchasing on the Rakuten website was to make use of its point program.

Japan's E-Commerce Market: Fast Delivery, Low-Cost, Long Tail Goods Have Become the Norm

Japan's E-Commerce Market: Fast Delivery, Low-Cost, Long Tail Goods Have Become the Norm

Iwai:

With respect to point services, the survey results regarding attitudes about where to accumulate and use points were interesting. The survey indicated that participants accumulate points in various places, including stores, but they are far more commonly used on e-commerce websites.

Kanno:

When considering e-commerce, rather than thinking about the transactions, we should probably consider their growing importance in terms of people's lifestyles. Rakuten, which conducts business modeled on shopping-mall operations, makes its point program central to the multiple services it offers. In its latest financial results, Rakuten described itself as the “No. 1 Membership Company,” and is taking steps to make its approach evident.

Iwai:

The issue is the degree to which e-commerce environments can be set up and be still further integrated into people's lifestyles. For e-commerce to grow in popularity, I believe it will be increasingly important for service providers to consider the convenience of all kinds of usage settings, and pay particular attention to attracting more smartphone users.

Kanno:

Rakuten is far ahead of the other online shopping sites in terms of its point service, but it also holds sales campaigns more often. By contrast, Amazon Japan users seem comparatively less concerned about discounts and sales. In this regard, the differences between the two companies are striking.

Ozaki:

In the survey, we asked participants about their willingness to use various kinds of services. Surprisingly, what participants wanted most was a service that would allow them to specify the date and time of a delivery's arrival. Scores for their willingness to use services in connection with delivery times are, in descending order (from highest to lowest): specified date and time of delivery, next-day delivery, delivery within three days, same-day delivery, delivery within one hour, and delivery within 20 minutes.
I am sure there will always be demand for quick deliveries but, at the same time, as Iwai mentioned, there seems to be stronger demand for services that suit individual lifestyles. Thus it would be interesting to see how consumer needs might change should ultra-fast delivery services of under an hour or so become the norm.

Japan's E-Commerce Market: Fast Delivery, Low-Cost, Long Tail Goods Have Become the Norm

Kanno:

E-commerce services are becoming increasingly efficient and more uniformly broader in scale. Thus, consumers' standards for choosing which services to use are changing, depending on whether the services suit individual preferences.


Project members

Japan's E-Commerce Market: Fast Delivery, Low-Cost, Long Tail Goods Have Become the Norm

Junichi Kanno

Director
Promotion Design Division
Dentsu Inc.

Japan's E-Commerce Market: Fast Delivery, Low-Cost, Long Tail Goods Have Become the Norm

Naoko Ozaki

Planning Manager
Promotion Design Division
Dentsu Inc.

Japan's E-Commerce Market: Fast Delivery, Low-Cost, Long Tail Goods Have Become the Norm

Takanori Iwai

Strategic Planner
Promotion Design Division
Dentsu Inc.

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