An increasing number of online buyers have reported that their web purchases have reduced their buying of similar items in retail stores, according to the 2008 Digital Future Project from the Center for the Digital Future. The percentage of web buyers who said that online purchasing reduced their local purchasing rose to 67 percent, up from 65 percent in 2006.
Seventy-one percent of Internet purchasers said they sometimes or often browse in traditional retail locations and then buy online, according to the study. Even higher percentages said they use the Internet as a browsing tool before buying in stores.
The average number of annual online purchases for those aged 18 and older totaled 36 purchases per person, the highest number since the Digital Future project began seven years ago. Nearly a third of Internet users age 18 and older bought online and spent under $100 a month.
While more people are making web purchases, privacy and security concerns remain. Those with the highest level of concern about credit card information increased to 57 percent, slightly higher than 2006 but at a far lower level than when the issue was first tracked in 2001.
Since 2000, the Digital Future Project has tracked the behavior and views of a national sample of internet users and non users, as well as comparisons between new users, defined as having 1.5 years or less of experience online, and very experienced users who have more than 10 years of experience. The survey is conducted by the Center for the Digital Future at the Annenberg School for Communications at the University of Southern California.
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