Thursday, July 26th, 2012
In the last two years the number of New Zealanders using the internet for any kind of online activity has increased from 81% to 85%. More than 3 million New Zealanders aged 14+ now do some kind of online activity in an average four week period, according to the latest Roy Morgan Single Source data for the 12 months to May 2012.
While it’s not surprising that ‘Communication’ and ‘Research & Information’ are the most popular online activities, it is noted that the ‘marketplace’ type of activities i.e. ‘Buying, Selling, Shopping’ has shown the most dramatic increase in recent years.
Just over half (51%) of New Zealanders 14+ now do one or more ‘Buying, Selling, Shopping’ activities online in an average four week period. This is a dramatic change considering that only two years ago the figure was 30%.

Internet activities done in an average four week period

Source: Roy Morgan Single Source, New Zealanders 14+, June 2009-May 2010 n= 11,058; &  June 2011-May2012 n= 11,737. Based on summary of internet activities done in an average 4 week period. * Note: ‘Blogs & online communities’ includes social networking.

Looking at the different online activities that make up this fast-growing ‘Buying, Selling, Shopping’ category, the most common are ‘paid for a purchase using a credit card’, ‘researched a product or service to buy’ and ‘participated in online auctions’.

‘Buying, Selling, Shopping’ activities (in an average 4 weeks)

Source: Roy Morgan Single Source, New Zealanders 14+, June 2011 – May 2012, n= 11,737.

‘Researching a product or service to buy’ was the fastest growing online ‘Buying, Selling, Shopping’ activity with the number of New Zealanders aged 14+ who do this in an average four week period having increased by seven percentage points in the last 12 months. This highlights the increasing popularity among consumers of doing pre-purchase research as part of their ‘path to purchase’.

Pip Elliott, General Manager (New Zealand), Roy Morgan Research says:
“The number of people using the internet to research products and services represents a huge opportunity for brands.  Online is now a key source for consumers seeking information on products or services to buy, and for many it is now the destination for all pre-purchase research.

“This has real implications for marketers in terms of understanding the consumer’s path to purchase and the roles that the internet plays throughout this process — from pre-purchase research, to buying, to posting product reviews online and facilitating word-of-mouth via social media.

“Building a strong brand is now more important than ever, to help drive consumers to seek out your products/services in the online marketplace.  Of course, brand’s online presence is critical, but perhaps more so is the need for a brand to already be in the consumer’s consideration set prior to commencing any product research.”


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Roy Morgan Research is Australia’s best known and longest established market research and public opinion survey company. Roy Morgan Single Source is thorough, accurate, and provides comprehensive, directly applicable information about current and future customers. It is unique in that it directs all the questions to each individual from a base survey sample of around 55,000 interviews in Australia and 15,000 interviews in New Zealand annually - the largest Single Source databases in the world. The questions asked relate to lifestyle and attitudes, media consumption habits (including TV, radio, newspapers, magazines, cinema, catalogues, pay TV and the Internet), brand and product usage, purchase intentions, retail visitations, service provider preferences, financial information and recreation and leisure activities. This lead product is supported by a nationally networked, consultancy-orientated market research capability.
Shaun Ellis
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