So, Who doesn’t use the Internet?

I was having a conversation with a client just last week about those people who don’t ever use the internet.  For me, and perhaps you, that thought of someone not using the internet at all is hard to grasp.  It starts in our home with “What’s the weather today?” and ends with reading articles on a tablet PC while watching TV.  It’s hard to imagine a job where people don’t need to send an email or get information from the internet.

 

So, how many people are still not connected?  5%, 10%?

How about 20%.

 

One fifth of adult Americans do not use the internet in any form, according to a new report from the Pew Internet & American Life Project.

Interestingly, there are no internet dropouts. The majority of them have never even tried to use the internet, and only 10 percent say they are interested in using it in the future.

OK, as we have discussed, many are senior citizens. But Pew says there are others who are younger and still avoid the web, including Spanish-speaking Hispanics, adults who have less than a high school diploma, and those in households that earn less than $30,000 per year.

“Most have never used the internet before, and don’t have anyone in their household who does,” the report says. “About one in five say that they do know enough about technology to start using the internet on their own.”

In 2000, just 47 percent of American adults were online; today it’s 78 percent.

Of course being online doesn’t just mean having a PC connection these days. Mobile internet use is on the rise, with a large number of adults owning at least one device capable of connecting to the web.

Eighty-eight percent have a cell phone, Pew says, and about half of those are smartphones. Fifty-seven percent have laptops, and 19 percent own an e-book reader. Nineteen percent have a tablet.

These devices have led some traditionally internet-less groups to gain access to the web.

“Groups that have traditionally been on the other side of the digital divide in basic internet access are using wireless connections to go online,” says the report.

“Among smartphone owners, young adults, minorities, those with no college experience, and those with lower household income levels are more likely than other groups to say that their phone is their main source of internet access.”

And remember, about half of all phone sold today are smart phones, so make sure you’re web site it mobile ready.

 

So, now that we know who isn’t using the internet, let’s review who is:

About four out of every five people.  Most of these people are aged 18-65, have a high school diploma, and a household income over $30K annually. And a lot olf these people are accessing your site on their smart phone or tablet PC, often doing his while sitting in your parking lot wondering whether or not to go in.

 

Today is a great day to check your website and make sure it is up to date.

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