96% of Millennials in Malaysia said that purchasing pre-owned items is more sustainable, according to new research by IAB SEA+India and Carousell Media Group

According to a new report published by Carousell Media Group (CMG) and IAB Southeast Asia and India (IAB SEA+India), a vast majority (96%) of millennials in Malaysia felt that purchasing pre- owned items is more sustainable.

The report on the Millennial Motivations and Buying Behaviours Online across Southeast Asia and Hong Kong, conducted across five Carousell Group’s markets – Singapore, Hong Kong, Philippines, Malaysia (for both Carousell and Mudah.my platforms) and Vietnam (Cho Tot) with over 3,500 respondents, also uncovered that the global trend of recommerce – or the buying and selling of pre-owned items – is accelerating in this part of the world.

“Across all the local market research what was consistently obvious is that we are witnessing the explosive growth of recommerce as it feeds two key needs of consumers today; the demand for sustainability and the hunt for a good deal. This juncture of ethics and eCommerce 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.” Miranda Dimopoulos, Regional CEO, IAB SEA+India said.

The research uncovered that Millennials in Southeast Asia and Hong Kong were driving this explosive growth. In the survey, 2 in 3 Millennials on Carousell Malaysia said that they sold their pre-owned items because it is better for the environment to sell their items than dispose of them.

JJ Eastwood, Managing Director, CMG shared “Recommerce has become synonymous with sustainability and this research demonstrates 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.”

This regional research establishes the audience profile in each market then explores income and spending habits, how the audience spends their time online, and offline, motivations to use buy-and-sell marketplaces as well as attitudes towards sustainability in relation to their purchasing habits. The report further goes into a deep-dive into some interesting local market insights.

Some key findings from the regional survey include:

  • 95% of Millennials felt that purchasing pre-owned items is more sustainable with 50% feeling strongly about this.
  • Millennials overall, also cared more about social issues such as sustainability, social responsibility and climate change in comparison to over 35s.
  • Malaysia ranked higher than the regional averages when it came to sustainability considerations being factored in by respondents when they were selling an item. 71% of the respondents said that they use platforms like Carousell & Mudah.my to sell products, with the intent of upgrading to something else, and because it is better for the environment to sell the item rather than dispose of it.
  • In the majority of markets, both those under 35 and over 35 are equally motivated to use the platform as the environmental impact is lesser when purchasing a pre-owned item.
  • Over 35s are significantly more motivated by promotions and sales when it comes to purchasing a luxury item whereas under 35s will save for a particular item.
  • Gaming, Mobile, Gadgets or Accessories is the top category in Electronic Items, followed by Computer Accessories and Home & Kitchen Appliances; these are all categories that facilitate entertainment, communication, virtual working and cooking as respondents spent more time at home due to COVID-19.
  • Asian platforms dominate the competitor landscape against similar Western platforms such as Amazon.

“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. In addition, when we took a closer look at the Luxury Category, we found that half of all respondents bought luxury items in the past 12 months.

Singapore, Carousell Malaysia and Hong Kong are above the purchasing average; despite being in the midst of a global economic slowdown. This signals the rise of an aspirational consumer class.” JJ Eastwood revealed.