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Kiddie Swimming Pools, Skincare Face Masks and...Corona Beer? Here’s What Filipinos Are Searching for Online During the Lockdown

Filipinos are also keen on bicycles these days.
IMAGE RAWPIXEL/NEEDPIX
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We can only imagine how much internet bandwith the world is eating up these days because of the coronavirus. In the Philippines, the enhanced community quarantine has been extended until April 30, which means a few more weeks that people are required to stay indoors and glued to their digital screens. 

Besides apps for basic services like food and grocery delivery as well as video streaming, people can’t seem to stay away from ecommerce sites. The iPrice Group studied what products Filipinos are searching for the most in March 2020, when the Luzon-wide lockdown period started, and compared it with the search interest for the same products in November 2019, well before the first case of the coronavirus was reported in China.

The findings were interesting, to say the least. Here are six things Filipinos have been searching for during the lockdown:

1| Outdoor Swimming Pools

You know those inflatable swimming pools for kids? Apparently, searches for them were up by about 518 percent during this lockdown period. According to the iPrice Group, parents are probably looking for alternative ways to keep their kids occupied during the quarantine period, which makes sense.

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2| Face Masks (Skincare)

Medical face masks are among the most coveted items these days, for obvious reasons. However, demand for skincare face masks have also increased. According to iPrice Group’s data, impressions on skincare face masks, or those looking at face masks in the skincare category, grew by 236 percent. It seems many Filipinos aren’t neglecting their skincare routine despite being stuck indoors.

3| Bicycles and Dumbbells

The BBC has already reported a spike in interest in bicycles during this lockdown period in the U.K., and it’s no different here in the Philippines. Impressions for the two-wheelers increased by about 97 percent. Moreover, Filipinos are definitely looking for ways to keep active and fit at home, which explains why impressions on gym dumbells also increased by 80 percent.

4| Wifi Adapters and LAN Cables

Internet at home is no longer just a luxury, but a necessity, especially these days when we spend most of our days indoors. With Filipinos looking for ways to make their Internet connections faster, reachable, and more stable, it’s no surprise that impressions on wifi adapters grew about 597 percent while those for LAN cables grew by about 150 percent.

5| Groceries

Expectedly, as more people are looking for alternative ways to purchase everyday essentials, so have searches for them have increased. Impressions on canned food alone, for instance, grew by 412 percent, with the most-searched for brands being Delimondo, Purefoods, 555, and Century Tuna. Meanwhile, impression on biscuits increased by 310 percent. The iPrice group notes that Filipinos are practical enough to stock up on food with a long shelf-life.

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Another thing Filipinos are searching a lot for these days? Household cleaners and disinfectants like Domex, whose impressions are up a staggering 1,097 percent in March compared to November last year. Impressions on disinfectant spray Lysol grew by 721 percent, while products with bleach, such as Clorox, Ariel, and Tide, are up by 172 percent.

Interestingly, searches for Corona beer grew by 2,084 perent, but the iPrice Group believes this to have something to do with searches on the coronavirus itself instead of the popular beer brand.

6| COVID-19 Essentials

Finally, there are some products that might seem to be no-brainers today but we wouldn’t think to be looking for just a few months ago. 

For instance, there was no interest in buying medical face masks in the iPrice platform before COVID-19, but searches started to spike when Taal volcano erupted in January. Unsurprisingly, impressions for medical face masks grew from zero in November to 100 percent in March. And, unsurprisingly, iPrice Group data shows that as the demand for them increases, so has its price. Comparing prices between January and March, iPrice found that the average price of medical face masks (both 3ply surgical and n95 masks) rose by nearly 86 percent. 

Impressions for thermometers and vitamins grew by an astounding 1,295 percent and 123 percent respectively. Meanwhile, searches for hand sanitizers surged to 2,207 percent, while those for soap increased by 989 percent.

Data featured in this study were obtained by aggregating thousands of product pages of more than 100 online merchants through https://iprice.ph/ on Google Analytics. Data on the increase in searches were analyzed by comparing the impressions data recorded from March 13 to March 30, 2020, as compared to November 13 to November 30, 2019. The price increase of medical face masks was also obtained from the product’s average price on the product pages of the iPrice platform.

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Paul John Caña
Associate Editor, Esquire Philippines
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