Market Insights: Singapore

In the latest in Croud’s series of Market Insights, we take a look at marketing in Singapore; exploring the use of digital marketing and sharing the key dates for your diary. This insights report was collated with direction from Singaporean Croudies on the network.

Languages spoken

The four official languages of Singapore are English, Malay, Mandarin and Tamil. However as Singapore is known as a multi-ethnic society, business conversations may include a smattering of ‘Singlish’ a combination of English, Chinese and Malay words.

Important dates

The working week in Singapore is Monday to Friday 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, with a one hour break from 1-2 pm. There is also often a half day worked on Saturday from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm,  but the maximum required working hours are 44 per week.

Digital marketing: Singapore

The majority of digital advertising comes from search ads and display ads. However, mobile ads are growing in popularity, making paid social a growing channel. Over 70% of Singaporeans are active on social media, with Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest being the most commonly used social media platforms.

The most predominantly used search engines are:

  • Google – 96%
  • Yahoo – 2%

Business in: Singapore

The next section covers some of the expected business attitude conventions that exist in Singapore, particularly in the case of the workplace.


Titles of people are very important so when introducing people for the first time, particularly in a formal setting, you should always use the person’s title and family name.

Business cards

There is no specific time to exchange business cards, but one should always show respect to your partners by taking a moment to read it carefully before placing it in your case.

Singaporean time

Singaporean workplace culture is famous for having a strong structure for everything, which seeks a sense of order and tends to set appropriate rules for every situation. Therefore it’s very common to schedule meetings in advance as people will often be booked up in advance. The advised time frame would be to schedule your meetings at least two weeks in advance.


  • 72.4% of the population are Chinese, 13.2% are Malay and 9.2% are Indian.
  • Around 49.4% of the population is male and 50.6% female.
  • Around 73% of the population are aged between 15-64, 11.2% are 64+ and 15.7% are under 15.
  • Singapore employers have the highest turnover rate in the Asia Pacific, with 46% of employees likely to leave their jobs within one year.


Singapore is home to 10 religions, with Buddhism/Taoism, Islam, Hinduism and Christianity as its principal religions. Usually, Muslims are allowed to perform their prayers in allocated, private places within the office. These daily prayers normally occur around 1 pm and 4 pm. On Fridays, male Muslim workers are usually allowed to take longer lunch breaks to observe the congregational prayers at the mosque. Muslims also generally refrain from close contact with the opposite sex, so there is absolutely no handshaking, kissing and hugging with Malay/Muslim colleagues of the opposite sex.


Most shops and shopping centres are open seven days a week. Opening times start at 10 am and shops close between 9 and 10 pm. With regards to public holidays, shops are usually open but it is common for businesses to shut for Chinese New Year.

Interesting facts

  • The life expectancy for men is 80.7 and 85.2 for women.
  • Singaporeans are relationship-orientated in business and prefer to build enduring ties rather than seal a quick deal.
  • The current birth rate of Singapore is 1.2 births per woman.


To discuss further, or to find out more about the Croudie Network, contact us.

*All opinions are directly from the experiences of the Croudies.


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