Web Remains a Man’s World Outside US

The demographic split in Web surfers from nations other than the US remains heavily weighted toward males, according to data from Australia, Ireland, New Zealand, Singapore, and the UK gathered by Nielsen//NetRatings.

The US Internet audience remains slightly weighted toward females, who represented 50.8 percent of the May activity recorded by Nielsen//NetRatings, versus males, who represented 49.2 percent of the overall audience. The widest gender gap was seen in the UK, where 60.9 percent of the May audience was male and 39.1 percent was female, and in Singapore, where 57.6 percent of the audience was male and 42.4 percent was female. Males across all markets also spent between two and three hours longer surfing the Web in May than females.

“The demographic split in the Internet audience in the US has evened out over the past 18 months,” said Sean Kaldor, vice president of E-Commerce, NetRatings. “The female audience in the US is primarily visiting shopping sites, such as jcpenney.com, and spiegel.com, home sites, such as hgtv.com, or general interest sites like oprah.com. Overseas, the female audience is still primarily visiting portals like ninemsn.com.au in Australia, or msn.com in New Zealand, Ireland and the UK. Marketers looking to target female audiences can interpret this activity to mean that females outside the US are still searching for sites they can visit and re-visit for information pertinent to their daily lives.”

Male/Female Internet Audience Ratio
May 2000
Country Male
Average Time Spent Per Month
Male Female
Australia 54.87 45.13 8:01:41 5:57:08
Ireland 55.20 44.80 5:18:42 3:21:59
Singapore 57.57 42.43 7:23:38 4:30:18
New Zealand 52.33 47.67 8:46:29 6:00:07
UK 60.86 39.14 5:52:51 3:46:57
US 49.25 50.75 9:54:57 8:18:26
Source: Nielsen//NetRatings

The data also showed that, in general, US home users are narrowing their preferred Web sites while non-US home users remain open to a world of offerings.

“Americans visited an average of only 10 sites in the past month,” he said. “By contrast, even though other nations consistently spent less time online, they visited up to twice as many sites. For example, Internet users in the UK went to 16 sites while New Zealanders hit a whopping 19 sites. In countries where dominant market leaders have yet to evolve, consumers still practice window shopping on a much more pervasive basis than in the US.”

May results also showed that in the US, people with access to the Internet are far more likely to actually access the web than users overseas.

“Over 60 percent of US consumers with home Internet access go online in a typical month,” Kaldor said. “By contrast, consumers in Singapore are half as likely to go online; only 32 percent use their Internet access in a typical month, while UK and Ireland home users are similarly stingy, falling in at 45 percent and 44 percent, respectively.”

Average Internet Usage
May 2000
Australia Ireland New Zealand Singapore United
Number of sessions per month 18 12 9 15 12 11
Number of unique sites visited 10 15 17 19 20 16
Page views per month 662 436 361 429 495 386
Page views per surfing session 36 36 39 29 42 35
Time spent per month 9:05:24 7:05:05 4:25:19 7:27:31 6:09:31 5:02:36
Time spent during surfing session 0:29:50 0:34:41 0:28:42 0:30:02 0:31:01 0:27:24
Duration of a page view 0:00:50 0:00:58 0:00:44 0:01:02 0:00:44 0:00:47
Active Internet Universe
(actually surfed)
82.7 million 3.5 million 344,800 635,000 540,700 8.8 million
Current Internet Universe
(had access, didn’t necessarily go online)
134.2 million 7.0 million 777,600 1.3 million 1.7 million 19.4 million
Source: Nielsen//NetRatings

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