September 11 boosts online shopping


More people in the US plan to shop online following September 11 - but say it's nothing to do with fears about shopping malls being targeted by terrorists.

Confidence in the internet is up 34 per cent in the region worst hit by the suicide attacks. Overall, confidence is up nine points since the terrorist outrage.

But 84 per cent of internet users reject the idea that they intend to shop online because of concerns about shopping in large public places. Instead, the findings - by Yahoo! and researchers AC Nielsen - confirm users are increasingly comfortable online after turning to the internet as never before for news updates and communication services.

'On September 11 and during the weeks following, the internet played an essential role for millions of people by enabling communication, delivering news and channelling charitable giving for emergency relief agencies,' said Yahoo's Rob Solomon

'Yahoo! witnessed increases in traffic and donation patterns in astonishing numbers. The index confirms that consumers now recognise that e-commerce related activities, such as donating or shopping online, are safe, secure and very convenient.'

AC Nielsen's Travyn Rhall added: 'The trend of growing confidence in the internet and in e-commerce is clearly being driven by the convenience, speed and information capabilities of the internet, and not by fears of terrorist attacks.

'This is a key distinction to be made for online retailers who are re-examining their marketing strategies post September 11.'

Using the internet to donate to charity in the wake of the attacks may also have made people more comfortable about disclosing their credit card details online, paving the way for internet shopping, say analysts.

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