Study: Online Gift Shopping Triples This Year

Interim results from an ongoing survey sponsored by World Research and EarthLink show that 69.3 percent of
Internet users surveyed have already used or plan to use the Internet for
shopping this year, compared to only 21.1 percent last year.

On average, these respondents expect to spend $316 online this year vs. an
average of $157 last year.

Only 4.7 percent of the respondents reported that they had finished their
holiday shopping and 45 percent had not yet started, according to the study.

With only two weeks left for holiday shopping, shoppers are realizing they’re
running out of time, which is one reason that online shopping has shown such a
tremendous increase since last year. But that’s just one reason.

The top three
reasons people are shopping on the Internet this year: Over 80 percent said no
crowds; 75 percent said they can shop day or night; and over 70 percent said
they don’t have to wait in lines or deal with traffic and parking problems.
Product availability and selection fell far below on the list.

“These preliminary results show that e-commerce is coming of age and Internet
users are embracing online shopping,” said Gregory Harmon, director of
research at San Jose, CA-based World Research. “We look forward to tracking
this survey throughout the holiday season.”

The survey was developed as a partnership between ISP EarthLink Network and
World Research to better understand consumer online shopping habits. There
were 1,887 participants as of December 8, when the data was tabulated. The
survey will be maintained through the end of the holiday season, and can be
accessed here.

World Research provides both traditional and online market research. Clients
Silicon Graphics, Netscape Communications, Sun Microsystems, Symantec,
EarthLink, CMP Media, Cisco Systems and Canon Computer Systems.

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