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The Internet’s new billion

Posted by Michael Bloch in ecommerce (Friday September 3, 2010 )

Ka-ching! Brazil, Russia, India, China and Indonesia will have 1.2 billion folks online by 2015 according to The Boston Consulting Group.

There are already plenty of Internet users in those countries says the report – around 610 million by the end of 2009. To double in 5 years is pretty phenomenal and online merchants should take note – this means there will be plenty of opportunities and challenges in regard to ecommerce.

The report looks at the online behavior patterns in these countries, based on thousands of interviews and the results of numerous focus groups conducted in ten cities across those regions.

According to The Boston Group, instant messaging, online music and games are more popular in those countries than elsewhere; but there is diversity among the countries (referred to collectively as BRICI). For example, social networking is more popular in Indonesia and Brazil than in other BRICI countries – or for that matter, even in developed markets.

Something worth noting too is BRICI users are more likely to be accessing online content through mobile phones than desktops, little wonder given there are 1.8 billion mobile-phone SIM card subscriptions in BRICI, which is more than four times the combined total of those in the United States and Japan. This will give mobile ecommerce a nice boost.

Additionally, 60% of BRICI Internet users are under the age of 35.

So, if you’re catering to the young ‘n hip market, it looks like there’s some great opportunities here for you. For the rest of us, I’m sure there will be some benefits, but on the down side – if you think spam and phishing is bad now, hold that thought for a few years.

You can read more of The Internet’s New Billion: Digital Consumers in Brazil, Russia, India, China, and Indonesia; on The Boston Consulting Group web site.


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