According to latest statistics from eMarketer, Spain’s Internet population is coming of age which is an odd thing to read when only looking at eMarketer’s headline. However, it does make perfect sense, as the majority of Spain’s population is going online more than once a day and many consumers in Spain, around 68%, have actually used the internet for more than 10 years now. Hence, the explanation that Spain’s internet population is coming of age. However, although the majority of Spanish consumers is using the internet on a daily basis, there are still many consumers that are not yet touched by the web (eMarketer 2013).
With many web-enabled devices now becoming mainstream, the amount of consumers using several web-enabled devices is also growing. Almost 86% of consumers in Spain actually did use a mobile phone to go online whereas 43% used a tablet to go online. This is quite interesting but for Spain, the desktop and laptop are still predominant devices too with which users go online with 77% and 73% respectively. Interestingly, around 14% of Spanish internet users also mentioned they used their TV to go online and another 12% used a video console. Mobile is certainly one of the key drivers for growth in Spain, as internet penetration is growing continuously thanks to mobile devices. In 2014, the web population in Spain is expected to reach 30.6 million.
As in any country, the increase in web users directly impacts on how consumers are using other forms of media. The overall level of engagement with more traditional media and other media than the web in general is decreasing. In Spain, statistics show that less consumers are watching TV with 62% stating that less time is spent watching TV, as this time is used to be online. This is a pattern that happens in many countries worldwide and can be seen as a natural shift from more traditional media like the TV to spending an increasing amount of time browsing online due to an increase in using social media, researching and browsing online content.
When looking at the online activities that are most popular in Spain, it is clear that reading the news is the clear leader with 86% of Spanish online users seeing the news as their top online activity in December 2013. This is closely followed by around 80% of Spanish users watching online videos and around 71% of users consulting maps and another 70% consulting the weather forecast. Interestingly, all of these daily activities have moved from traditional media or ways to access the information towards it all happening online. The web has become the first access point for any news and information and the TV has moved down to second place.
Looking at e-commerce and its development in Spain, it is interesting to note that it is evolving at a quicker pace now after having a rather slow start at the beginning. One-third of Spanish web users have bought a product or service online before and only around 8% of Spanish consumers had never bought anything online before. This figure is predicted to decrease further, as many Spanish consumers are actually taking advantage of the web and the ability to actually buy tickets, travel, electronics online now rather than using other means to purchase services and products.
In general, the Spanish web population is still underdeveloped when comparing it to the likes of North America and Western Europe but significant growth can be measured.
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