Thailand flag Thailand: Buying and Selling

E-commerce in Thailand


Internet access
According to the Electronic Transactions Development Agency, Thailand currently has around 41 million internet users. Internet penetration in Thailand is currently at 43% and should reach 50% by 2021. Smartphone penetration is 32% and is projected to grow to 40% by 2021.  Thailand is among several countries in the Asia Pacific region which are considered mobile first. 66% of all web traffic is mobile, with 44% of traffic divided between all other devices. The most popular search engines in terms of the market share are Google (98.58%), Yahoo! (1.14%), Bing (0.2%), Baidu (0.02%), DuckDuckGo (0.01%) and Yandex Ru (0.01%).
E-commerce market
The e-commerce market in Southeast Asia is one of the fastest-growing and most promising, projected to grow to $11 billion in 2025. The Thai market is currently second largest in the region and expected to grow 22% annually till 2020. The driving factors come from increased internet and mobile phone use as well as improved logistics and e-payment systems. This creates heightened convenience and consumer confidence to shop online. In addition, the quality and reliability of online shopping services have been improved significantly, and the acceptance of e-commerce has increased in the country. In 2017 the total e-commerce market in Thailand was estimated at US$ 2 billion, and the total revenue is expected to reach US$ 3.5 billion in 2018. B2B e-commerce in Thailand is also growing rapidly due to internet development and mobile transformation. Cross-border B2C is particularly significant and it's estimated to grow to US$ 1 trillion by 2020. According to the Electronic Transaction Development Agency, the sectors using e-commerce platforms to increase their productivity include the food and service sector with 31%, followed by manufacturing at 16%, and retail and wholesale at 15%, respectively.
E-commerce sales and customers
There are currently 12.1 million e-commerce users in Thailand, with an additional 1.8 million users expected to be shopping online by 2021. These 13.9 million e-commerce users will represent 24.5% of the total population. As of 2018, user penetration is 54% and is expected to hit 64.6% by 2022. The average user spends US$ 243 online, which is expected to grow to US$ 382 by 2021. E-commerce is particularly popular among the younger generations, with 33.4% of users aged between 25 and 34 years old. Around 50% of all online purchases are done using mobile devices. In addition, the growth of mobile commerce is likely to push social commerce along. According to the Thailand Marketing Research Society, 71% of smartphone users in Thailand shop online an average of twice a month, while 90% intend to shop online in the future. Thailand’s smartphone penetration increased from 43% in 2013 to 61% in 2015. The rate is expected to reach 80% in 2018. Thailand was still a cash-dependent society and of the total transactions in 2016, cash accounted for 75%, but almost 25% were paid through credit cards, e-wallets, Internet banking, and ATM machines. Thailand’s online and mobile banking market could reach maturity within six years from now, largely driven by the national e-payment system and significant growth in mobile broadband penetration.  By 2021, over 85% of the population will go online via mobile phone, up from 31% currently. Total e-commerce revenue across all product categories is US$ 2.9 billion, expected to reach US$ 5.3 billion by 2021. Electronics are currently the leading product category, accounting for US$ 1.3 billion market share. Fashion is second, accounting for US$ 525 million.
Social media
Thailand’s Social Media Penetration is just 32% of the total population. However an important consideration is that 51% of online shoppers say they purchase goods directly via social media. Thailand currently has around 41 million Facebook users, 33 million LINE users, 7.8 million Instagram users, and 5.3 million Twitter users. The most used social networks are, by market share, Facebook (87.14%), Google+ (4.3%), VKontakte (2.87%), YouTube (2.43%), Twitter (2.41%) and Pinterest (0.57%).

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Latest Update: March 2023

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