If you had to add up all the time you spend online for your boss, how would you allocate it? The findings of a new study released from the Online Publishers Association might (or might not) surprise you. The study, conducted over the last four years by Nielson/NetRatings, found that Internet users are spending nearly half their time on content rich sites such as entertainment and news websites, with more time spent on this activity than shopping online, emailing, or searching on various search engines.
The abundance of content and faster online speeds accounted for the spike, the study said. A proliferation of social networks such as News Corps’ MySpace and Facebook have helped boost content viewing as well.
Overall, viewing content accounts for 47 percent of time spent online in 2007, up from 34 percent in 2003. Web search accounted for 5 percent of time spent online in 2007 from 3 percent in 2003.
I have to think that the increase in search engine use and social media obviously influences the amount of time we spend viewing content. Better, more accurate searches yield better results which naturally means were going to be spending more time reading online. Am I wrong?
The study also found that e-commerce sites like Amazon only accounted for 15 percent of time spent online in 2007; falling 5 percent, while time spent on communications like email fell 28 percent to 33 percent due to the increased use of instant messaging programs.