When it comes to hearing about the latest and greatest in goods and services, Americans as a whole are most likely to check out their favorite online search engines. The Art Technology Group, Inc. (ATG) reports that a walloping 52% of American consumers cite search engines like Google or Yahoo as their primary source for finding this kind of handy information, but in the case of the younger, hipper generation, that percentage drops considerably. In comparison, less than half of young adults between the ages of 18 and 34 found out about new products and services through online search engines.
So what’s filling the gap? The answer could (in part) lie in the popularity of online social networking sites – Facebook in particular. While only 8% of Americans on the whole cited online social networks as common places to learn about what’s new on the market, 14% of young adults consider it a primary source, and 29% say that they’ve found a product or service on their social networking site in the past-compare that to the 14.5% of everyone surveyed.
Despite social networking sites’ noteworthy popularity with hipsters, ATG reports that e-mails from merchants land the runner-up spot for getting information out to consumers. And it seems that even in our high-tech age of instant information, old-fashioned word-of-mouth and print advertisements still play a major role in spreading the news about new products and services.
You can check out the break-down of ATG’s consumer report below.
- Online Search Engines (52%)
- E-mails from Merchants (42%)
- Word-of-mouth (31%)
- Print Advertisements (30%)
- Online Marketplaces (such as Amazon or eBay) (27%)
- Online Advertisements (21%)
- Catalogs (20%)
- Website Recommendations (18%)
- TV Advertisements (18%)
- Direct Mail (14%)
- Price Comparison Service (13%)
- In-store Displays or Signs (12%)
- Links/Information on Social Networking Sites (8%)
- Radio Advertisements (5%)
- Product Placement on TV or Movies (4%)