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How Latin American Women Use the Internet

This post is also available in: Spanish

We already know from earlier studies done by Deloitte and TGI Latina that women play major role in purchase decisions.  We also know that women make up around 50% of the Internet users in Latin America—as well as 50% of the e-commerce buyers. And both general Latam studies and studies of specific markets show that categories like fashion and beauty are among the top categories of products that Latin Americans buy online.

Given these circumstances, a new study of nearly 3,000 Latin American women by Oh! Panel offers significant data that may help marketers, advertisers and media firms refine and optimize their digital ad campaigns that target this audience. The Oh! Panel study was done in partnership with Mercado Libre and includes responses from female Internet users in Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela. Here’s a look at some of the key findings.

Top Online Activities: Email, Searching for Info and Social Media
According to the study results, 92% of Latin American women use the Internet for email, 85% use it to search for information and 73% use it for social media. Getting news (66%), buying products (64%) and using instant messaging to communicate with family and friends (58.5%) are among the other popular activities.

37% of Latin American Women Listen to Music Online
Ensuring that popular music sites like Grooveshark and last.fm are part of an online ad campaign makes sense, given that a significant percentage of Latin American women use the Internet to listen to music.
Mexican women listen to music online more than women from any other country surveyed (42%), but the activity is also popular among Brazilian women (38%), Argentine women (37%), Peruvian women (40%) and more.

Top Social Sites Among Latin American Women
According to the survey, 98.8% of Latin American women surveyed are on Facebook, while 50.9% use Google+, 33% use Twitter, 15% use LinkedIn and 14.7% use Orkut. The rest of the social media sites in the survey—Sonico, Instagram, Myspace—produced single-digit percentages  of use.
In looking at the popular social sites by country, Facebook was generally huge popular in all countries studied, while Google Plus and Twitter were both most popular among Venezuelan and Colombian women. LinkedIn was most popular among Brazilian women and Venezuelan women, while Orkut was most popular among Brazilian women.
While we have seen strong growth for Pinterest in Latin America in comScore’s recent research, in this survey only 2.7% of the respondents said they go on the site.

Most Latin American Women Think Online Ads Are Helpful
The large majority (73%) of respondents agreed with the statement “Online ads don’t bother me and help me stay current with the new products and launches.” In addition, 76.2% of Latin American Internet users say they are interested in online promotions because they can buy what they want more cheaply and faster.

Online Ads Significantly Influence Purchase Decisions of Latam Women Online
More than half (52.8%) say that online ads influence their purchase decisions, while 23% were neutral and 24% indicated that they did not.

Online Comments About Products Are Important
More than 3 out of 4 Latin American female Internet users (75.9%) say that they pay attention to online comments about products and services because they are an excellent way to find out if a product or service is good or bad.

8 out of 10 Latin American Women Say They Shop Online
Overall, 82% of the respondents say they have purchased or sold a product online in the past year. Brazilian women seem to be the most avid online shoppers, with 89% reporting buying or selling a product via Internet in the past year. The large majority of Uruguayan (85.5%), Venezuelan (79.3%), Mexican (79%), Colombian (73%), Peruvian (72%) and Argentine (69%) women also report buying/selling products online in the past year.

Top Products Latin American Women Buy Online
More than 73% of Latin American women report buying technology products (digital camera, tablets, GPS, notebook computers) online. Other popular e-commerce products among Latin American women include clothes/shoes (44%), decorative items (32%), books (26.7%), trips (26.4%), products for children (25%) and music (19%).

Most Latin American Women Think Online Shopping is Safe
In the past, surveys identified security as a barrier to the development of e-commerce in Latin America. However, this survey suggests this may be changing. When the women in this Oh! Panel survey were asked what two words most come to mind when they have to make an online purchase, 59.2% selected “fast” and 59% selected “safe.” Only 21.5% selected “unsafe.” In addition, the majority (53.9%) feel that it will become safer and safer to buy high-value products online while 18% disagree with this statement and 27.7% are neutral.

Most Latin Women Plan on Buying Products for the Home via Internet
Overall, 62.6% agreed with this statement, while just 23.5% were neutral and 14% disagreed.

E-Banking, E-Learning and Other Activities Are About to Take Off in Latam
When asked which online activities they thought would grow the most in popularity, the majority of the respondents (57.8%) said buying electronic products online. Other online activities Latam female Internet users say will grow in popularity are e-banking (55%), e-learning (39%), shopping with cell phones (26%) and buying plane tickets online (23%).

To find out how we can help you reach women or any other type of market segment in Latin America via any type of media, please contact us.

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