10 years ago, I was perplexed by the discrepancy between women's purchasing power and their hesitation to buy online. I ran a fancy regression analysis and discovered that privacy concerns were the leading barriers to women coming on board full force. As confirmed by a recent report from comScore, Women on the Web, this issue is far behind. According to comScore, U.S. online women are the key drivers of Web purchases. They make more transactions online and they spend more than men. In fact, they are responsible for 58 percent of e-commerce dollars.
Globally, women are slightly less likely than men to be online (46 percent vs. 54 percent). However once women go online, they are more connected than men. Across Latin America, Europe, North America and Asia Pacific, women spend more time than men on social networking, emailing and sending IM messages. Health, apparel and family/parenting sites have the widest reach among women worldwide.
The study also offers insights on smartphone usage in the US and in Europe. As of April 2010, men are more likely than women to use smartphones in the US (60 percent vs. 40 percent) and in Europe (63 percent vs 37 percent). Yet it's important to note that women are taking to social networking apps on their smartphones. If their PC networking habits are any indication, as smartphone usage becomes mainstream, women will shape this medium as well.
To download the full comScore study, please click here.