LONDON: European consumers are steadily being won over to the joys of online shopping, according to a new survey by the European Interactive Advertising Association.

The EIAA Mediascope Europe 2006 study found that 78% of European internet users shop online. They spend an average €750 ($971; £492) and buy ten items online over just six months - an increase of 11% year-on-year.

UK and Scandinavian online shoppers are most enthusiastic while Germany's bargain-hunters secure a high number of purchases at much less cost.

Conversion rates from research to purchase are also on the rise. The cellphones category has seen the biggest rise, up 23% to 38%, followed by music downloads, up 16% to 52%; and car accessories, up 15% to 47%.

Concert tickets have the best conversion rates - up 12% to 75%, followed by car hire (61%), food shopping (58%), computer games (55%) and holidays (54%).

The study also shows that online shoppers spend less time watching TV as a result of the internet. They also visit a wider range of websites, most significantly more banking and finance sites (56% compared with 50% of all internet users), price comparison (43% versus 38%) and auction websites (41% versus 36%).

Comments EIAA chairman Michael Kleindl: "More money spent and items bought online shows that consumers are integrating online shopping into their daily lives."

Data sourced from M&M Europe; additional content by WARC staff