Consumers more confident, savvy about ecommerce

$16bn to be spent by US during Q4

Consumer confidence in ecommerce and the Internet is growing despite the effects of the weakening economy, according to a joint survey by Yahoo! and ACNielsen.

It seems consumers are becoming more confident about disclosing their credit card details online and more trusting that goods they've ordered will be delivered.

And it seems the growth in ecommerce sales comes against the backdrop that consumers realise buying online doesn't necessarily mean the goods will be cheaper than in the high street.

Put together, these results helped the second wave of the Internet Confidence Index register a five point rise compared with June.

Three months ago, the survey predicted that the US would spend $9.9 billion online during the third quarter. This time round analysts predict that the US will spend $16 billion online during Q4 in the run up to the holiday season.

Critically, the survey found that the future growth of ecommerce depends on a strong Q4 and the opportunity it gives ecommerce novices to buy online.

The research found that if these "light" Net users (those who use the Net less than once a day) have a good online shopping experience they're more likely to become regular eshoppers.

And turning "light" users into "heavy" Net users is key to making ecommerce part of mainstream consumerism.

Said Rob Solomon, VP and GM of Yahoo! Shopping: "The results have further confirmed what we have experienced over the last two holiday seasons; holiday shopping has become the impetus for light Internet users to shop online, many of whom in turn become regular online shoppers." ®

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