Internet Use And Online Shopping May Be Up, But Most Still Prefer In-Person.

Internet Use And Online Shopping May Be Up, But Most Still Prefer In-Person.

It’s probably no surprise that, based on a survey of 1,000 people conducted by, 45.7% of respondents report using the internet (on a phone, tablet or computer) more compared to last year, with average time spent online daily up to eight hours. What may surprise is that even though close to half of the sample (47%) has shopped online more frequently since COVID, in most cases people still prefer doing that in person.

While the survey results show three in four people research their purchases online, where they prefer to buy is another story. When it comes to tech products or ordering food to go, the internet has the edge, with 47% and 41% respectively preferring online to in person, or by phone for the latter. For grocery, home goods or clothing shopping, though, it’s no contest: in-person is preferred by 67%, 50% or 48% of respondents. For the former, that’s in spite of the finding that 31% reported having used a delivery service such as Instacart since the pandemic.

Also notable: while many prefer ordering meals online, 42% would rather use a physical restaurant menu than one at an eatery’s website. And while banking online is fine with 61% of people, only 11% prefer virtual doctor appointments, even though 30% report having received virtual health care more frequently since COVID. The online business with no reported change since the pandemic is ride-share apps such as Uber, with 64% using at the same rate now as then.

As for entertainment online, 32% have streamed music, podcasts or other audio content more frequently since COVID, with the average American now spending five hours doing so daily; 48% are streaming movies, TV and other visual content more frequently, while 26% are playing video games more often.

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