Millennials shop online, use cashless as holiday rush kicked in

More mobile-savvy millennials went online shopping and used cashless payments to complete their holiday gift lists in the last two months of 2017.

This was gleaned from data generated by various platforms of leading technology firm Voyager Innovations.

The number of unique PayMaya account holders–majority of which belong to the “millennial” category–who transacted online jumped almost three-fold in November to December from the same period last year. This observation points to the growing number of Filipinos who are getting comfortable in digital commerce as a viable option for holiday shopping.

“While mall shopping is still the norm for most Filipinos, we saw a marked increase in online shopping among our mostly millennial user base during the 2017 holiday season,” said Paolo Azzola, Chief Operating Officer and Managing Director at PayMaya Philippines. PayMaya is the digital financial services arm of Voyager.

He noted that online transactions recorded by PayMaya account holders further rose when different online marketplaces such as Lazada, Zalora and Takatack launched their big online sales in November and December, wherein PayMaya also gave its account holders an added exclusive 20% discount.

Cashless transactions growing

PayMaya data showed that in the last two months of 2017, online transactions via retail merchants like Lazada topped the list for PayMaya account holders.

Pinoy Consumers are into  gadgets

On the digital commerce front, Pinoy shoppers seem to gravitate more toward electronics products, as eight of the top ten products ordered through Takatack (, Voyager’s online shopping marketplace, belonged to this category. In terms of the kinds of items ordered online, power banks, external hard drives, bluetooth speakers, and smart watches dominated the shopping list of consumers.

Adoption of digital payments and commerce has grown faster over the past two years as prepaid e-wallets regulated by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) such as PayMaya have been introduced. These digital wallets foster financial inclusion as any mobile phone user in the Philippines can create an account and use it for online transactions up to a certain amount limit.

Latest available data from Better than Cash Alliance as of 2013 show that 99% of all payment transactions in the country are still done via cash. Electronic payments by businesses and individuals account for 1% and 0.3%, respectively.

While this figure has most likely grown over the past year, accelerating digital payments adoption remains a top agenda for the nation. The National Retail Payment System initiative led by the BSP and supported by banks and e-money issuers like PayMaya aims to increase cashless transactions to 20% of the total volume of payment transactions by 2020.

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