Kids and Teens to Spend More Online

Kids and teens are the two largest growth sectors on the Internet, according to research by Jupiter Communications, though they will account for less than 5 percent of online shopping revenues in 2002.

Jupiter’s research also found that marketers are actively targeting kids and teens for digital transactions, marking a shift from more passive forms of online advertising and causing concern among parents in the process.

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Over the past year, Jupiter reports, parental concern regarding advertising to kids has more than doubled, from 17 percent in 1998 to 45 percent in 1999.

A study conducted by Jupiter and NFO Interactive among 600 teens (age 13-18) and kids (5-12) on their e-commerce habits revealed two-thirds on online teens and 37 percent of online kids have researched or purchased products online. By 2002, Jupiter predicts teens will account for $1.2 billion and kids will account for $100 million of the e-commerce dollars spent.

“Similar to the offline market, kids and teens have a profound impact on online purchasing decisions,” said Anya Sacharow, a Jupiter analyst. “Today’s kids are sophisticated and see the Internet as a preferred tool for information gathering; commerce is a natural progression. Instead of grabbing parents’ coat sleeves, today’s kids ask parents for credit card numbers in place of an allowance and buy products online.”

According to Jupiter, approximately 8.6 million kids and 8.4 million teens were online in 1998. By 2002, there will be 21.9 million kids and 16.6 million teens online.

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