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Top 4 Reasons Why Filipinos Don’t Buy Online


Access, Trust, Experience, and Price

According to Eva Claravall, Research Director of TNS, the Philippines ranks 6th in the world in accessing content online. However we’re very low in terms of e-commerce or online shopping/buying. She identified 4 major barriers that came up in their research that are stopping a lot of Filipinos from buying online.

Not Everyone Has Internet Access

Internet penetration in the Philippines plays around from 45-50%. While it’s a huge improvement and has been rapidly growing, we’re still at the halfway mark. More than 50M Filipinos still don’t have Internet access. The 50% that do struggle with unreliable connections, especially on their mobile phones.

A lot of People Still Don’t Trust Online Shops

Since e-commerce is still in it’s infancy, not a lot of people trust online shops. They feel that they will either be scammed or their credit card information will be stolen and they will be charged for stuff that they never bought in the first place.

Bad Experiences They’ve Had or That They’ve Heard of

Personally we can relate to this. We’ve had at least 3 bad experiences buying online here in the Philippines. It’s either the product TAKES FOREVER to arrive or it NEVER arrives at all. This is actually the reason why we prefer COD or meet-ups because at least we are sure that we get the items we want on time.

Little difference in Price

Lastly, it’s not compelling to buy online if there are no savings. A lot of online shops here sell their goods at the same prices they sell it in the malls. Since we’re still in the infancy stage of e-commerce, online shops should offer more value so that more Filipinos use their hard-earned cash online.

How about you guys? Are you averse to online shopping in the Philippines? Regardless if your answer is a yes or no, feel free to share your thoughts on this issue below in the comments section.

PS: Visualization above was made by Pushpin Visuals. Awesome company that does real-time graphic recording.

*Eva Claravall presented at the IMMAP Summit 2015

Carlo Ople

Carlo is the Editor-in-Chief and Founder of Unbox.ph. During daytime he’s the Managing Director and Partner of a Digital Marketing Agency in the Philippines and by nighttime he’s living out his passion as a gadget enthusiast and story teller through Unbox.


  1. LAZADA Philippines is notorious. 5 times the product that came was defective. Then the issue of stocks. They are selling items which are either out of stock or of different model. Then the issue of refunds that take almost forever, some even 15-30 days. Then they offer you store credit. Then the atrocious pricing. Who ever heard of a Huawei CPE costing north of PHP10K when it could be had for less than PHP5K in Greenhills and Gilmore?

  2. One thing na dapat gawin ng LAZADA is offer a money-back guarantee if ever na hindi satisfied yung customer sa product, ibawas na lang yung re-stocking/re-packaging fee sa price at least may makuha naman ang customer kahit paano.

    1. Pay them with a paypal account in case you needed a refund for a defective item. Paypal have a buyer protection program wherein you can do a refund if you are not satisfied with the product.

  3. i ordered at Lazada 8 times already.. So far so good.. :) .. haven’t encountered any issues at all from all of the products that i’ve purchased.. :) .. currently enjoying my Sony MW1 Bluetooth Headset which i just received yesterday.. :D

    1. Same here. Ilang beses na akong bumili sa lazada pero walang defect. Malaki din ang tipid dahil di na kailangang magjollibee or mamasahe papunta sa mall. Ang disadvantage lang e hindi mo kaagad makukuha ang product pero mapapatawad na kung di ka naman nagmamadali. Depende rin sa pangangailangan ng consumer kung masyadong mahal ang gadget at kailangan ng personal testing. Sa mga sd cards at asus powerbanks naman, mas tiwala ako sa lazada dahil nagkalat din ang peke sa physical stores at meron silang asus online booth. I don’t like Kimstore, tatlong high end phones at puro may dead pixels ang nabili ko. Ang pinakaturn off na lang sa pagbili sa online stores ay ang hindi pag-issue ng official receipts.

    2. Me too maliban sa isa. dumating naman ng maayos pero wala pang 20 minutes at sira na kagad yung item at naitawag ko naman kagad pero after a month eh hindi pa rin dumarating yung kapalit at sa inis ko nagrefund na lng ako and since paypal gamit ko eh nairefund ko naman

  4. I do purchase online but not electronic products. So far so good. All items came on time and are of good quality. Not so sure on electronic products. Nothing beats the confidence you get when touching and testing the product before you part ways with your hard earned cash.

  5. napapagkamalan na akong associate ng lazada kasi parati ko sila nirerecommend haha. i’ve bought multiple gadgets from them, all COD and mostly ok naman. once palang ata ako hindi satisfied sa quality nung product. my worst experience from them is once they took almost a month to reactivate a simple refund code.

    sa other online stores, i can say with full confidence na widget city is rude sa pagsagot ng inquiries HAHAHA.

  6. LAZADA is actually pretty reliable…yun nga lang pag naka bili ka ng item sa mga swapang na 3rd party reseller dun, aba’y goodluck na lang….Dami ko na ring na-order diyan, pero pumalya lang nung ayaw nilang palitan yung binili kong Eneloop packs na mga sealed pa….Minsan ka lang ma-disappoint…..

  7. I love Lazada. I ordered 6x na sa kanila. So far so good lahat. Just make sure na yung unit is sold and fulfilled by Lazada kasi may iba jan na 3rd party. Matagal magship pag ganern.

    COD is the best form of payment pa rin.

  8. im a Lazada Customer for like 2 years now, or maybe 3

    Effotless Shopping, TRUE !!
    Why? : cash On Delivery, hassle free lalo na sa common people like me, malayo ang MALLS, konti ang oras para magpunta sa mga SHOP / MALLS, isnt it amazing na dadating sa bahay mo ang LBC / LEX para ideliver ang items mo. at babayaran mo nalang sa delivery guy.

    nag start ako nung una syempre duda, normal yan. i tried naman mag order ng MicroSD, aun mura sya since 1,000 pesos and above ay FREE SHIPPING.. !! then na kwento ko sa mga kapatid at pinsan ko. order na din sila. nag check ako ng website nila. ok naman madali lang mag order . pero dapat magbasa kang mabuti. wag click ng click. naka indicate naman dun kung Available for CASH ON DELIVERY.. most common na hindi pwede ang COD, dun sa mga IMPORTED items. dun muna tayo sa for COD, kung pwede lang icheck ang list of all orders. andami ko na sigurong nabiling item kay Lazada .

    So far so good. never pa ko naka encounter ng DEFECTIVE ITEM from Lazada, ang maganda dito ALMOST EVERYDAY may DISCOUNT COUPON/VOUCHER sila !!

    Thank you Lazada Philippines !
    More Power !

  9. My husband purchased a bluetooth headset with Lazada few weeks ago. So far, the item is good. Smooth transaction. Now I’m planning to purchase an item for myself and I trust it’ll be as good as our first purchase.

  10. I have bought several items from Lazada. So far, I have no complaints yet. I really love the low price and COD option. And in fairness, their CS agents are polite and helpful.

  11. I ordered several times at Lazada and they never disappoint me. Good thing i discovered lazada 2 years ago. Reason why i always ordered at Lazada is beacause of the time that i can save. Yes, it may not be cheaper than those of the tiangge but it is indeed an effortless shopping. The COD is also amazing since you dont have to fall in line to bank sending the deposit slips or even giving out your credit card details. Kudos to Lazada for proving to us that shopping is just a click away.

  12. With traffic not getting better anytime soon, more and more people are now inclined to do their shopping at the comforts of their homes.
    Anyway I’ve ordered more than a dozen defect-free items from Lazada using a credit card and I can say it’s safe. But if you’re unsure if its safe to use your credit card information on an online shop, use your credit card thru Paypal instead.

  13. online,pysical store or mit upz man kapag mamalasin ka sa pagbili talagang wala ka magagawa kasi kahit sa ka man sumuot na transaction na pagbili may kaakibat talagang sakripisyo, ang ipunto na lang siguro dito eh yung percentage ng credibilty ng kukunan ng item. ebay pa nun nasa buy ang sell na me ng gadget lahat ata ng uri ng transation naranasan ko na succes at hindi.

  14. Lazada should be more like Amazon and sell obscure items. I looked for toothsoap since I can’t stand those commercial toothpastes with the flouride poison, I can’t find one. Guess I’ll have to rely on importers like Johnny Air.

  15. Also, is there an effective government agency that will protect the consumers and will represent the consumer in grievances against these online stores? I have raised a complaint and filed it with the proper DTI agency. Everything is being done via email. Now, DTI is asking me to appear in person in their Makati office. Airfare alone is twice the amount of the item I am complaining about.

  16. I have always been ordering lazada and never received a defective item. otherwise there’s an option that we can return the product if ever it’s DEFECTIVE!

    So it’s still good :)

  17. Trust is a very fragile thing. I purchased and paid for via credit card from Lazada, only to find out after 2 follow ups and 12 days that the item is not available. Refund will take up to 45 days.

    So, how do we really know if we will be receiving the products purchased in the first place? I also have a colleague who ordered only to find out days later that the price posted was off by about P200 and they will not deliver at the earlier price shown on their website.

    Again, trust is a very fragile thing.

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