Value sales within the Japanese internet retailing market grew by 11% in 2012. With high penetration of the internet in Japan, the industry experienced continuous double-digit growth over the past 10 years. According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, 88.9% of mobile phone users in their 20s' reported internet usage and it is common to surf online with mobile phones especially among young consumers.
Additionally, the Japan Electronics and Information Technology Industries Association reported that growth in sales of smartphones exceeded 50% from January to March in 2012 and this was the first time in the history of the mobile phone that such a quarterly result had been recorded.
With technological improvements in portable media, including smartphones and tablets, the spread of internet retailing among consumers accelerated.
One of the recent trends in internet retailing is "OtoO" (Online to Offline) which is a strategy employed by various retailers to acquire new customers online and encourage them to visit physical stores. With slow economic recovery, retailers' sales suffered while internet retailing demonstrated robust growth over the past five years. Retailers are pursuing "OtoO" to bring consumers back to physical stores.
Rakuten Inc dominated the Japanese internet retailing market with a 26% value share in 2012. Rakuten Inc has established its status in the e-commerce industry and its sales posted a CAGR of 16% over the 2007-2012 period. In 2012, Rakuten Inc launched an e-book, Kobo, to gain access to the digital content market.
Additionally, Rakuten Inc invested in social networking site venture, Pinterest, to promote Rakuten sales with a combination of SNS viral marketing. Amazon Japan Co Ltd holds second position in the industry with a value share of 14%
Value sales of internet retailing are expected to post a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9% through to 2017. According to the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, 80% of online shopping is conducted via computers while 20% is through mobile devices. With the continued popularity of smartphones and tablet devices, the ratio of online shopping through mobile devices is anticipated to increase.
For more information on the Japanese internet retailing market, see the latest research: Japanese Internet Retailing Market
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