December 8, 2004, 12:00 AM

Rural consumers 16% more likely than urbanites to shop online, study says

Rural U.S. consumers were 16% more likely than other consumers to shop online during the four-week period ended Dec. 4, Hitwise reports.

Rural U.S. consumers were 16% more likely than other consumers to shop online in November, research company Hitwise reports.

“With the holiday shopping season well underway, Internet users in remote, rural segments are taking advantage of the convenience and comprehensiveness of online retailing,” said Bill Tancer, vice president of research. “Interestingly, the data indicate that this higher propensity of rural Internet users extends across all socioeconomic segments, from the working class to the transplanted elite.”

Hitwise, which gathers data in association with Claritas and Prizm, notes that rural Americans accounted for 38% of total visits to all web sites and 44% of visits to online shopping sites.

Among the top 100 retail sites in number of visitors for the four-week period ended Dec. 4, those with the highest percentages of rural visitors were, with 62.3%, followed by, 59.5% and, 55.9%, Hitwise says.

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