January 19, 2001, 12:00 AM

Teens Search the Web but Buy More Offline, Study Says

Don Davis

Editor in Chief

Kids and teens will spend $4.9 billion online in 2005, but that's a fraction of the projected $21.4 billion theyâll spend offline that year based on information theyâve found on the web, says a new study from New York-based Jupiter Communications. The takeaway, say Jupiter analysts, is that businesses must broaden their Web marketing efforts and focus on driving offline purchases, not online transactions. About 15% of teens purchase online today, but another 49% use the Internet to research goods and products before purchasing offline, the study found. While the teen shopping population will continue to grow, "Teens will still spend a limited number of dollars online," says Jupiter analyst Anya Sacharow. "To capture the greater offline-influenced dollars, marketers must provide teens with information on their products and services that would impel them to purchase offline." The study also pinpointed gender-based differences for marketers to keep in mind when targeting teens: girls gravitate to familiar offline brands, while boys aren't as brand-sensitive and search for content regardless of the source.

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