Who Are the 15 Percent Who Don’t Go Online?
Through a special arrangement, presented here for discussion is a summary of a current article from MarketingCharts, a Watershed Publishing publication providing up-to-to-minute data and research to marketers.
Eighty-five percent of American adults were using the internet as of May 2013, representing a new high point for adoption, according to a new report from the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project. That still leaves 15 percent of adults who do not use the internet or e-mail, for a range of reasons. The study takes a look at the demographics of this group, with some fairly predictable — but nevertheless interesting — results.
One of the biggest discrepancies in adoption is found when sorting by educational attainment. Respondents with no high school diploma were 10 times more likely than college graduates to be offline (41 percent vs. four percent), with a high proportion (22 percent) of high school graduates without any college education also offline.
Age, predictably, also factors in heavily. While just two percent of 18-29-year-olds are offline, that figure rises to eight percent among 30-49-year-olds and 17 percent among 50-64-year-olds, before jumping to 44 percent for the 65+ group.
Interestingly, although Hispanic cell phone users are more prone to using their device to go online than the average American, Hispanic adults are more likely than the average adult to be offline (24 percent vs. 15 percent).
Household income (HHI) also plays a role: 24 percent of respondents with HHI of less than $30,000 are offline, compared to 4 percent with HHI of more than $75,000. Rural Americans are also, not unsurprisingly, more likely to be offline.
Separate results from the study indicate that 19 percent of offline adults say they don’t use the internet because of the cost, while seven percent cite lack of availability or access. The main reasons for not going online, though, concern relevance (34 percent) and usability (32 percent).
- Usability has spiked as a reason for not going online, with this year’s 32 percent up from 18 percent in 2010. Availability is a much smaller issue than it was in 2007 and 2009.
- Fourteen percent of offline adults said they used to use the internet, while 44 percent have asked a friend or family member to go online for them at some point.
- Fewer than one in 10 offline adults would like to start using the internet or e-mail.
- Nine percent of American adults use the internet, but not from home. Incidence of out-of-home use is higher among lower-income respondents and those with low levels of educational attainment.
- Among those who use the internet outside the home, the main reasons for not going online at home are price (42 percent) and relevance (17 percent).
- Fifteen percent of American Adults Don’t Go Online. Who Are They? – MarketingCharts
- Who’s Not Online and Why (Press release) – Pew Research Center
- Who’s Not Online and Why (Report) – Pew Research Center
What do you take from the Pew Research Center survey around technology adoption? Should marketers invest in adults who do not go online or simply wait it out until they do so?