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Ofcom Reveals How Scots Love The Net - And Other Facts

26 May 2010 - 15:15 by Graham Miller

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The latest research from industry regulator, Ofcom, entitled the Media Literacy Reports, provides a useful insight into the nation's online habits. The studies cover attitudes to the online arena, usage and purchasing information. As such, the material provides some food for thought for online retailers and for those who enjoy safe shopping online.

Half of UK adults told researchers that they see safe shopping online as a way in which to save money. 48 per cent said that they had achieved savings by checking the internet and using price comparison sites or through simply buying something online as opposed to in a high street store. 81 per cent of UK adults said that in the past six months they had used the internet to save money.

The reports also provide valuable insight into the time consumers spend online. In England, the typical adult uses the internet for 8.3 hours a week, whilst the highest usage levels are to be found in Scotland, where adults are online for an average of 10.6 hours per week. Among the most visited sites was Amazon.

In addition, the reports offer some insight as to how willing UK adults may be to enter personal details online. Researchers found that adults in Scotland are most likely to enter card details, with 40 per cent readily doing so. This is in sharp contrast with the 19 per cent of adults who would willingly do so in Northern Ireland.

No doubt the demographic information from Ofcom will be extremely useful to retailers in formulating an effective online marketing strategy. With clear attitudinal and habitual differences in different locations, some level of regional focus may be required in ensuring that online marketing spend is used to greatest effect.