IntelliQuest Information Group, Inc. (Nasdaq:IQST), a leader in providing information-based marketing services to the technology industry, today announced the results of its latest survey of the United States population’s use of Internet and online services, showing 51 million adults, age 16 and older, in the U.S. online as of the second quarter of 1997.
This represents a 46% growth from the 35 million users reported one year ago. The majority of this growth occurred in the second half of 1996, when the online population increased by 34% in six months.
Although growth of the online population slowed in 1997, the market is far from saturated. An additional 8.5 million adults intend to begin accessing the Internet or online services by the end of the year. If these people follow through with their intentions, the number of wired U.S. residents could reach 60 million by year-end.
The most startling new result is in the emergence of online shopping. In this survey, 17% of users (8.6 million adults) claimed to be online purchasers, with a median monthly expenditure of $50, the online commerce market is running at a $5.1 billion annualized rate. These results are more than three times the findings from the levels found one year ago, when a projected 2.6 million individuals were purchasing at a $1.6 billion annual rate.
These results were announced today as part of IntelliQuest’s Worldwide Internet/Online Tracking Service (WWITSv), the most comprehensive study of its kind. The study generates in-depth profiles of Internet and online user demographics, usage patterns, brand awareness, satisfaction rates and growth trends.
The IntelliQuest WWITS study provides subscribing companies with consistent, longitudinal and highly accurate tracking of the online population. Highlights of the findings for the second quarter of 1997 include:
The majority (66%) of users access from home, but the population of users accessing from work is large and growing fast. In the second quarter of this year, 23.3 million people were going online while at work, a 57% increase from the same period in 1996.
There is a relatively small proportion of extremely active users (20%) who spend 10 hours or more per week online, but nearly 40% of all users said they were spending more time online than they did a month ago. Where are they finding the time? Most said by watching less television.
The online population continues to grow towards the mainstream. Females now account for 47% of Internet and online service users, compared with 36% a year ago. This trend should continue, as females make up 58% of non-users who intend to go online in the future.
User satisfaction with the medium remained low. User’s overall satisfaction with their experience was most highly correlated with their degree of satisfaction with their Internet or online service provider. What would they most like to see improved? Speed of access, followed by reliability of connection. While online buying is still done by a minority of users, over half of those online (54% or 27.6 million people) use the medium for shopping; researching the prices or features of products, locating where to purchase products, and selecting products. Online shopping is, at this point, dominated by males (62% of shoppers and 70% of purchasers).
“It is tremendously exciting to see the online world growing towards the mainstream of our society,” said Tom Fornoff, Managing Director of Internet Services at IntelliQuest. “With each wave of our study, we discover new opportunities for the companies building the medium, whether it’s the online purchaser, the business user, the interested but hesitant prospect, or the frustrated new user. All of these users and intenders provide targeted product, marketing or brand opportunities for the industry.”
Rigorous Methodology, Unique Focus
The study employs a rigorous random-digit dial (RDD) methodology to develop projectable estimates of both user and non-user populations. IntelliQuest’s investments in screening techniques, interviewer skills, and expert methodology design (including participation from the U.S. Census Bureau), have allowed the creation of a study that can project the total Internet and online adult population to within an error rate of 1%.
The study is unique in its coverage of both users and non-users of the Internet and online services, as well as its coverage of home, business and school usage. While much current industry research focuses on total usage metrics, the WWITS study allows for analysis and projection of differentiated market segments identifiable by demographics, usage patterns or user attitudes.
The study was designed cooperatively with industry vendors who provided initial funding and questionnaire support, and is available to additional business subscribers. In addition to the U.S. study, conducted quarterly, baseline data for online usage is available for France, Germany and the UK.
For more information
Results of IntelliQuest’s Worldwide Internet/Online Tracking Service are available on a subscription basis. Full service subscriptions include access to the entire data set through detailed crosstabulations, graphical reports with market findings, and custom analysis. Summarized results are available through IntelliQuest’s Internet Trends Report. This report contains awareness, usage, segmentation, shopping and trend data for all three waves of the U.S. WWITS study. For more information on the full subscription of IntelliQuest’s Worldwide Internet/Online Tracking Service and the Internet Trends Report call 1-800-711-3753.
Headquartered in Austin, Texas with offices in Atlanta, Ga. Redwood City, Calif. and London, England, IntelliQuest provides information-based marketing services to the technology industry. IntelliQuest uses its proprietary databases and software to help technology companies track product performance and customer satisfaction, measure advertising effectiveness, assess brand strength and competitive position, determine price sensitivity, and evaluate new products, markets or other business opportunities. The Company also licenses custom proprietary software applications and associated services to technology manufacturers for electronic product registration. IntelliQuest has over 400 employees worldwide. IntelliQuest Information Group, Inc., MarCom Department, 1250 Capital of Texas Highway South, Building One, Suite 600, Austin, Texas 78746, (512)329-0808, fax (512)329-0888, email [email@example.com]; World Wide Web [http://www.intelliquest.com.]