All About dataSpring's Malaysia Research Panels | EYE ON ASIA

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All About dataSpring's Malaysia Research Panels


In July 2014, dataSpring started offering partner’s panels through our own company panel platform, surveyon PARTNERS. We also offer our company’s Malaysian online research panels. In this article, we will share some tips in conducting online research in Malaysia.


Country Language

  • Official: Malaysian
  • Survey: Malaysian, English

English was historically the de facto administrative language, but Malay became the main language after 1969. Malaysian English, also known as Malaysian Standard English, is a form of English derived from British English. It is widely used in commerce, along with Manglish, which is a conversational form of English with heavy Malay, Chinese, and Tamil influences. The government discourages the use of non-standard Malaysian language but has no power to penalize improper Malay usage on advertisements.


Regions Covered

Malaysia is a federation composed of 13 states (Negeri) and 3 federal territories (Wilayah Persekutuan). The population is concentrated on Peninsular Malaysia, where 20 million out of approximately 28 million Malaysians live. Roughly 70 percent of the population is urban.


State Capital Royal Capital
Johor Darul Ta'zim Johor Bahru Muar
Kedah Darul Aman Alor Setar Anak Bukit
Kelantan Darul Naim Kota Bharu Kota Bharu
Malacca Malacca City  
Negeri Sembilan Darul Khusus Seremban Seri Menanti
Pahang Darul Makmur Kuantan Pekan
Penang George Town  
Perak Darul Ridzuan Ipoh Kuala Kangsar
Perlis Indera Kayangan Kangar Arau
Sabah Kota Kinabalu  
Sarawak Kuching  
Selangor Darul Ehsan Shah Alam Klang
Terengganu Darul Iman Kuala Terengganu Kuala Terengganu


Federal Territory Capital
Kuala Lumpur Kuala Lumpur
Labuan Victoria
Putrajaya Putrajaya


Demographics and Ratio of Panel Composition

Compared to the population composition, the ratio of panels in the 40s to 50s age range is small, therefore it may be difficult to collect the data. Please kindly consult with us.


We recommend checking the feasibility of the survey in advance - using our FREE IR Check tool.




% est. pop.1 Ratio of Panel Composition for dS panel
Male 52.31% 45.16%
Female 47.69% 54.84%
13-19yo 8.31% 10.72%
20-29yo 17.88% 46.67%
30-39yo 15.96% 27.08%
40-49yo 13.29% 11.24%
50-59yo 9.42% 3.11%
60yo+ 11.29% 1.17%

1Reference website: and



When targeting or allocating by income, it is common to design the survey according to the SEC classification.


*SEC is the socioeconomic characteristic that consumer has, defined by variables such as income, educational background, occupation and so on. It is an abbreviation for Social Economic Characteristics. There are several definitions regarding SEC.

% Monthly Household Income

  Ratio of Panel Composition for dS panel
Less than MYR 1,000 24.71%
MYR 1,000 - 2,999 21.55%
MYR 3,000 - 5,999 22.05%
MYR 6,000 - 8,999 9.44%
MYR 9,000 or higher 7.77%
No Answer 14.49%


Local Pro Tip:

Malaysia is estimated to have over three million migrant workers, which is roughly 10 percent of the entire Malaysian population. According to the government's last census, the state of Sabah alone had nearly 25% of its 2.7 million population listed as illegal foreign workers. Sabah-based NGOs estimate that out of its three million foreign workers, two million are illegal immigrants.

Also, citizenship in the states of Sabah and Sarawak in Malaysian Borneo are distinct from citizenship in Peninsular Malaysia for immigration purposes. For identification of its citizens, every Malaysia 12 years old and up must carry a biometric smart chip identity card, known as MyKad, at all times.


Ethnic Composition of Our Panels

Malaysia is multiracial, with many different ethnic groups living in the country, including Malays, Chinese, Indians, and other indigenous Bumiputra ("son of the soil" in Malaysian) groups. This cultural diversity makes Malaysia a highly rich society, with diverse religions, foods, culture, and customs.


The demographic composition in the country is as follows.


Ethnic group Percentage
Malay 50.1%
Chinese 22.6%
Non-Malay Bumiputra groups 11.8%
Indian 6.7%
Other ethnic groups 0.7%
Non-citiziens 8.2%


Precautions in Conducting Online Research

The following topics are considered taboo in Malaysia:

  • Gambling
  • Blasphemy and questioning of religion, Sharia law, or royalty
  • LGBT issues
  • Discrimination of ethnic and religious minorities


Final Words

Before conducting online or mobile surveys in Malaysia, it’s important to know its basic profile. For more in-depth information, talk to our Local Experts today!

Online research panels have become one of the most important tools of the modern market researcher, and it can yield valuable insights and results if used properly. To know more about online research panels, especially in the Asian region, check out our Understanding Online Research Panels page.


Contact us anytime 24/7! One of our Springers will be in touch with you within 24-48 hours to follow up on your request.