Moms are Web surfing: study

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Advertisers should integrate search engine marketing to reach moms planning online and offline purchases and vacations, according to a study conducted by DoubleClick Performics, the performance marketing division of DoubleClick Inc.

The research was completed in cooperation with Microsoft and ROI Research and is entitled "Searcher Moms - A Search Behavior and Usage Study." The results show heavy search engine usage in support of planning activities among moms.

"With over two-thirds of the moms in our study spending 16 or more minutes online, and 86 percent [saying] that search engines are the most-efficient way to find information, it's clear that they rely heavily on search," said Stuart Larkins, DoubleClick Performics VP of search.

The study shows that moms rely on search engines for a wide range of daily tasks.

With nearly 1,000 moms surveyed, 89 percent use the Internet at least twice a day, and 90 percent have been using it for more than seven years. A full 86 percent of respondents said search engines are the most efficient way to find information.

"Some marketers might be surprised [at] just how much time mothers spend online - this is a highly targetable, educated and affluent audience - and two-thirds of moms use search after seeing an advertisement," said Larkins.

The Searcher Moms study gives marketers a better understanding of this group's behavior, such as learning if working moms search more or less than non-working moms, or if they use different search engines.

Seventy percent of moms surveyed use search engines to gather information before making online purchases and 57 percent use search engines to gather information before making offline purchases. Also, 64 percent use search engines to discover where to purchase products offline.

"Marketers for consumers packaged goods companies, this study is your wake-up call," said Larkin. "An overwhelming 80 percent of [moms] searched for at least one CPG category, and 97 percent are the primary grocery shopper within their household. It's important that CPG marketers cater to this audience. There is tremendous room for growth in both paid and organic search for CPG companies. We found that search greatly impacts offline purchases, so marketers need to make sure online and offline campaigns are integrated."

Within the eight product groups included in the study, 92 percent said search engines are helpful in providing valuable information prior to purchasing and 79 percent said search engines are helpful in providing valuable information prior to purchasing offline.

Regarding CPG, more than 70 percent reported using search engines to compare prices, to find retail locations and to gather product information.

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