Britons use 13 minutes out of every hour spent on the web for social networking and forums, figures from information services company Experian has shown.
Britons also tend to spend nine minutes of their online stay on entertainment sites and another six minutes on buying products, according to the report. Data concerning the online activities of North American users is similar, with 16 minutes dedicated to social media, nine minutes to entertainment and five minutes to shopping. In Australia, Internet users spend 14 minutes on social media platforms, nine minutes on entertainment and four minutes on making purchases.
Despite the huge amount of time Britons, Aussies and Americans spend on social media, in comparison to 2011 the consumption of such content dropped across all three regions proportionate to their other online activities, the researcher noted. In the UK in particular, the time spent on social media dropped to 22% in 2012 from 25% the previous year.
In 2012, consumers from all three countries stayed longer online to shop compared with 2011, but the UK was the nation proving to have the most active online shoppers, as they spent more time on e-commerce websites than their peers in the US and Australia. Overall, online shopping accounted for 10% of the time spent by the average UK user online, up from 9% in the US and 6% in Australia. According to Experian, this high share could be a result of the busy Christmas season, when Britons spent an aggregate 370 million hours on buying products on the web, or 24% above the monthly average.
Internet users from the three markets also accessed more news content last year. The growth was particularly strong in Australia, where people spent 6% of their Internet time on reading news online, up from 5% in the UK and 4% in the US.