It’s been a year since the number of women online surpassed the number of men, and as a group, women still are adopting the Internet at a rate eclipsing that of men. New figures from Jupiter Media Metrix show that women over the age of 18 comprised 40.9% of all online users in May 2001, up from 40.3% in May 2000 and 39.3% in May 1999. By contrast, men 18 and up represented 39.8% of all online users in May 2001, down from 40.1% in 2000 and 45.7% in 1999.
The largest gender shift in the population of online users over the past two years has been among people over 35. Women 35 to 54 increased from 19% of all online users in May 1999 to 20.1% in May 20001. Male users in that age group dropped from 20.7% of the online population in May 1999 to only 15.6% over the same time. Moreover, the proportion of women online aged 55 and up grew 80% from 2.6% of the online population in May 1999 to 4.7% in May 2001, while the number of men aged 55 and over increased less dramatically, from 4.4% to 5.3%.
“Women continue to tip the scale when it comes to their representation online,” says Doug McFarland, president of Media Metrix, the online ratings division of Jupiter Media Metrix. “Marketers and online advertisers must not lose site of this important demographic as it continues to shift the online landscape.”