U.S. adults are going online more frequently to search for information about products and services. According to a new report from the Pew Research Center, 58% of Americans conduct such research online “at least occasionally.” That’s up from 49% who said the same thing in 2004.
When applied strictly to the Internet-using population in the U.S., the number goes up: Pew says 78% of adult Internet users in the U.S. do product or service research online. Here’s a further demographic breakdown of that 78% number.
This Pew study doesn’t distinguish how the “online research” happens. We can infer that search is a popular way that adults look for product or service information, but it may also include visiting company web sites, e-commerce sites, or even sites that offer ratings and reviews of products and/or businesses.
Speaking of reviews, the Pew study says 24% of all U.S. adults (32% of Internet users) have posted product reviews or comments online.
Pew surveyed 3,001 U.S. adults between August 9 and September 13, 2010.