Europeans look to the web to learn about brands

11 December 2009

BRUSSELS: A majority of European consumers are now using the web to find out about products and services, while a quarter are also accessing TV and radio content via this medium.

Eurostat, the statistics agency, conducted a survey across the 27 countries in the European Union in the first quarter of this year, and found that 65% of households had access to the internet, up by 5% on an annual basis.

Penetration rates were highest in the Netherlands, on 90%, followed by Luxembourg, Sweden and Denmark, where totals were above 80%, and Germany, Finland and the UK, which all posted figures of over 75%.

More specifically, 56% of residences had a broadband connection, an uptick of 7% year-on-year, reaching a peak of 80% in Sweden, 77% in the Netherlands and 76% in Denmark.

Nearly three-quarters of 16–24 year olds surfed the net on a daily basis, compared with around half of all individuals in the 16–74 year old age range.

Some 51% of people are logging on to the internet to research goods and services, including 79% of adults in the Netherlands, 77% in Sweden, 74% in Denmark, 69% in Germany, and 64% in the UK.

Mobile web usage levels, however, stood at just 4% overall, climbing to double digits in Denmark, Luxembourg, Slovakia and Sweden, compared with scores of 3% in Germany, and 2% in France.
A quarter of consumers are going online to stream broadcast material from TV and radio stations, jumping to 50% in Sweden and Denmark, and falling to 14% in Austria, and 13% in Italy.

Just over 30% of people read articles and stories from newspapers or magazines in the same way, an activity favoured by more than 60% of respondents in Finland, Estonia and Denmark.

With regard to eCommerce, 37% of adults had bought or ordered something over the internet in the last 12 months, including 66% of Britons and 64% of Danes, and declining to 5% of Bulgarians, and 2% of Romanians.
Over 40% of men have used the web to make such a purchase, while only 34% of women had done the same.

Data sourced from Eurostat; additional content by Warc staff