At-Work Internet Users Biggest Online Spenders

Consume More Online Media Than TV, Study Finds

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- At-work Internet users are heavier consumers of online media as well as bigger online spenders than at-home consumers, according to a survey released by Avenue A, the Seattle, Wash.-based digital ad and media agency.

Using their employers' broadband connections, at-work Web surfers shop more.

Parts of the new study's results appear to confirm an Online Publishers Association (OPA) survey earlier this year that reported Internet media consumption to be higher among at-work users. Avenue A's research found that Internet media consumption is 22% higher among at-work users than for home-only users. For instance, the time at-work users spend consuming online media exceeded their TV-watching time by 1.4 hours per day, or 46%, according to Avenue A.

3,052 responses
The Avenue A online survey was conducted on a non-branded or blind basis with self-reported information about respondents' use of the Internet both at home and at work, their online shopping preferences, recent shopping activity and psychographic data. The company collected 3,052 survey responses between May 29 and June 30 and culled data from clients' sites. Avenue A clients include Weight Watchers, Eddie Bauer, Expedia, AT&T Wireless and Microsoft Corp.

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The Avenue A study found that 64% of the at-work participants said they made purchases on the Web; 60% said they spent $100 or more online in the past three months, compared to only 39% of people who use the Internet at home. The number of online purchases increases as the amount of time spent online at work increases, according to the study.

Internet day-parting
The At-Work-Network, a group of five Web publishers led by CBSMarketWatch.com, has steadily promoted the idea of "day-parting" for Internet media, the concept that daytime is for online what prime time is for TV.

Day-parting is a standard system used by the advertising industry to segment or define specific parts of the broadcast day. Marketers' can then place ads to run in a specific day-part to reach a specific type of audience.

The group suggests that the most valuable consumers can be reached more effectively during the day when they are at work researching vacations, comparison shopping or browsing on their employers' high-speed office systems.

Peak shopping time
The suggested Internet day-part begins at 10 a.m. EST and goes across the country until somewhere between 4:30 p.m. and 6 p.m. The peak for online shopping is 1 p.m. EST. AT&T Wireless was the first advertiser to participate in the At-Work-Network but declined to comment on the results.

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