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The UK's Net users are becoming more confident with shopping online, according to the latest survey from Forrester.

The research outfit found that the more people use the Net, the more they are likely to shop online.

This shift from mere browser to active shopper is a sign of increasing maturity among UK Net users and comes at a time when the overall growth in Net users is beginning to slow.

According to the findings from the latest biannual UK Internet User Monitor survey's results, around 14 million UK Internet users have used the Net to buy or order products and services - an increase of 50 per cent on last year.

But the Net is also an important tool for researching possible purchases. Although email remains the most popular online activity, more than half of UK Net users said they researched products and services online.

A further 12 per cent said that they had gone on to buy a product or service offline (through a shop or dealer) as a result of their research online.

Said William Reeve, Forrester's group director of European Data Products: "The reason for the sustained growth in online buying is the growing maturity of the UK's Internet users.

"Our research shows that there is a clear correlation between experience and proclivity to buy," he said.

No doubt this will be welcomed by the UK Government which is keen to see a greater use of ecommerce.

Only last month it published a campaign aimed at easing people's fears about online shopping. ®

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