New Yorkers Favor Online Shopping

Everyone knows New York is a shopper's town. But it might surprise some that 54 percent of New Yorkers who already shop online plan on spending almost half their total holiday budgets--$327 out of $675--online this season, according to America Online's fourth annual "Online Shopping Cities" survey out today.

New York now is the seventh top online shopping city--up from the tenth last year, according to the survey. The rankings are based on factors including how frequently online shoppers research and buy online, and how much money they spend online.

Of those New Yorkers who said they will do more shopping online this season, 80 percent said they shop online because they can shop any time, 89 percent said they do so because it saves time, and 77 percent said it's because there are no crowds. Also, less than half--42 percent--said they shop online because they will save money on gas by not driving around.

Notably, 64 percent said that shopping for bargains and deals on holiday gifts is easier on the Internet. More than one-third--35 percent--said the Internet makes it easier to search for a gift across many different stores/sites, and nearly one-third--31 percent--also said it's easier to comparison-shop for the best price.

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Nearly all--94 percent--of New Yorkers said free shipping is important when shopping online.

Noting the increasing sophistication of online shoppers, 65 percent of New Yorkers said they have comparison-shopped; 64 percent have tracked packages online; 59 percent have used promotion codes and coupons when making an online purchase; and over a third--35 percent--said they have consulted online reviews of products and retailers before purchasing.

Almost half--45 percent--say their on- or offline holiday purchases will be driven by research they do online. However, while research is important to them, 40 percent still admit to relying more on impulses when shopping during the holidays, when compared to the rest of the year.

Asked about their broader online shopping history, 82 percent of New Yorkers claim to have been shopping online for three or more years, and 13 percent said they have been shopping online for 10 or more years.

This national survey was conducted from October 19 through October 31, through Digital Marketing Services. A total of 6,239 Web users were interviewed, including both online browsers/purchasers and non-browsers/purchasers.

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