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Online consumer confidence drops – analyst

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Consumer confidence in online credit card security has declined over the last five years, according to research from Forrester.

A third of online shoppers are "technology pessimists" who are concerned about online security, it seems. Back in 1998, when Forrester first started collecting this kind of data, fewer than one in five shared those concerns about buying online.

Not only are more people concerned about online shopping, it seems punters are spending less time on the Net. While two out of three people in the US use the Net regularly, today's consumers spend less time online than they did in the late 1990s, reported Forrester.

Pop these two elements together and Forrester reckons that Net users in the US have undergone "significant changes in consumer attitudes and behaviour" over the last five years.

As a result, ebusinesses need to understand and respond to these changes.

Said Forrester's James L McQuivey: "Consumers have been through a lot in the past few years - highs and lows that have permanently changed the way they live. Businesses need to understand the shifts that have occurred, so that they can offer consumers a different kind of experience."

Despite Forrster's concerns, official figures published last week by the US' Census Bureau of the Department of Commerce shows that e-sales are positively booming.

It estimates that retail e-commerce sales for Q2 2003 was $12.48 billion - an increase of 28 per cent on the same quarter last year.

Overall, e-commerce sales in Q2 accounted for 1.5 per cent of total retail sales - up from 1.2 per cent in Q2 2002. ®

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