December 23, 2009, 12:00 AM

Wealthy Americans are shopping for a range of goods online, says survey

61% of Americans in households that earn more than $100,000 have visited an online retail site in the past 30 days, says a new survey.

61% of Americans in households that earn more than $100,000 have visited an online retail site in the past 30 days, according to the American Association of Advertising Agencies’ 2009 Mendelsohn Affluent Survey. That percentage jumps to 63% for those in households that earn more than $250,000.

In fact, online retail sites are the second-most visited web site category among those wealthy consumers, behind only search web sites (70%), and ahead of categories such as social networks (58%), general news (56%) and entertainment sites (45%).

“The purchase of products and services online by affluents is startling in both its variety and its volume,” says the report. “Whether by computer, mobile/PDA device or smartphone, upscale consumers are using their tremendous purchasing power via web access at significant levels.” That’s not surprising, according to the report, since 98% of those consumers are online, compared to 75% of the general population.

Here are the percentages of affluent consumers who have made online purchase in various categories in the past year:


  • Women’s apparel or accessories, 43%
  • Books, 43%
  • Men’s apparel and accessories, 34%
  • Computers, electronics, or related equipment, 33%
  • Music and videos, 31%
  • Children’s apparel and accessories, 30%
  • Items on auction sites such as eBay, 21%
  • Housewares, 19%
  • Games, 17%
  • Toys, 16%
  • Cosmetics or fragrances, 14%
  • Sports and athletic equipment, 12%
  • Vitamins and other health aids, 11%


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