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First-time Data On NZ Internet Audience Activity

Nielsen//NetRatings Releases First-time Data On Internet Audience Activity In New Zealand

New Zealanders Spend An Average Seven Hours Per Month Surfing The Web At Home

AUCKLAND - May 2, 2000 - For the first time, New Zealand companies have reliable information about how kiwis use the Internet. The first full month of New Zealand Internet usage data was released today by Nielsen//NetRatings, the global Internet audience measurement service launched by ACNielsen eRatings.com. The New Zealand audience information is based on a representative panel sample of 2,850 home Internet users, the first Internet audience real-time measurement research panel in the country.
Topline findings indicate that MSN, Xtra and Yahoo! are the most popular sites by domain (see Table 1). Other findings identify ‘Baby Boomers’ in the 35-49 age bracket as the heaviest Internet users and the weekend as the most popular days to surf the web.
“At first glance, the strength of international domains like MSN and Yahoo! in a country like New Zealand could be seen as a sign of US companies cornering the worldwide market,” says Brian Milnes, managing director, Pacific region, ACNielsen eRatings.com. “Digging deeper, both MSN and Yahoo! have risen to the top in global markets, including New Zealand, by carefully developing relationships and partnerships with local content providers, then adding value-added applications, such as free email, online communities and searching capabilities to provide a well-rounded local package. Yahoo! has tackled the local/global issue by using its model of aggregating the best local and international information and adding its easy-to-navigate interface and personalisation tools to create a strong local presence. Local partnerships are key for US based portals in establishing an Internet presence in these countries.
“Two of our top five domains, Xtra and Xtrasite, are local and are doing extremely well. Xtra inverts the Yahoo! model. Its success is based on the strength of local content, and value-added applications, supplemented by international resources.” (Xtra and Xtrasite are detailed separately as visitors can be directed to one or two dedicated servers. These numbers cannot be combined as the majority of visitors between the two domains were almost completely duplicated during the month.)
While the US is experiencing an equal split of male to female Internet users, men account for 55 percent of the audience profile in New Zealand. Men in New Zealand also spent an average of nearly eight hours surfing the net in March, with women spending an average of just over six hours. The average time spent across both sexes was seven hours for the month, and 32 minutes during each surfing session.
“The habits of Kiwi surfers stack up well against those of American counterparts,” says Milnes. “America is a sophisticated and mature market compared with New Zealand and yet the kiwi appetite for new technology shows through in statistics like the average duration of a surfing session and the number of pages viewed per session per month, where the New Zealand results are comparable to the US.”
A number of major organisations from advertising agencies to traditional businesses and pureplays have already subscribed to the Nielsen//NetRatings service in New Zealand, including 7am.com, Bank of New Zealand, Walkers Advertising, Xtra, Television New Zealand, Independent Newspapers Limited, Quicken.co.nz, Webmasters and ACP New Zealand.
“There’s huge demand for this data,” adds Milnes. “Businesses need an independent, high quality service that assesses how well their online businesses are performing. Advertisers and media buyers need to know who goes on what site and for how long. Nielsen//NetRatings’ data delivers tremendous competitive advantage to its users.”
Nielsen//NetRatings is the world’s first global panel-based service for tracking audiences, advertising and user activity on the Internet. The service is provided by ACNielsen eRatings.com, a venture between ACNielsen, the world’s leading market research firm, and NetRatings, a leading Internet audience measurement technology and analysis company.
The data released today is based on information derived from tracking the activity of 2,850 home Internet users across New Zealand during March as they surfed the Web, moved within sites and were exposed to ad banners. ACNielsen eRatings.com announced the Nielsen//NetRatings service in New Zealand in November 1999 and has rapidly established the panel in the months since using a high-quality, random digit dial methodology.
In total, Nielsen//NetRatings Internet measurement panels currently involve 95,000 individuals under real-time measurement in the US, New Zealand, Australia, the UK, Ireland, Singapore, and Japan. All panellists outside the US have been recruited in less than four months, following the same high-quality standards and mirroring the rapid growth of the US panel, which grew from 6,000 individuals in February 1999 to more than 50,000 current at-home and at-work panellists.
The service’s comprehensive reporting includes summary information on overall home Internet use, including sites most visited and the leading advertisers. Extensive audience demographic data is provided on a summary basis as well as by specific Internet domains and by property, which is a composite of a company’s various domains. Nielsen//NetRatings also captures and displays actual ad banners, and provides demographic reports on the people viewing each banner.
“The comprehensive analysis available through Nielsen//NetRatings will enable site publishers, advertisers and agencies to track audience exposure to Internet ads, target specific demographic groups, undertake extensive campaign analysis and analyse competitors’ advertising and campaigns,” says Milnes.
“Nielsen//NetRatings combines the ingredients essential to Internet research – excellent measurement technology, a powerful sample representing New Zealand home Internet users, and timely data reporting through a powerful on-line system.”


Table 1. Nielsen//NetRatings Top 10 Sites by Domain*, March 2000

NEW ZEALAND, March 2000
Domain Unique Audience Time Per Person (hrs:min:sec)
msn.com 256,571 0:37:18
Xtra.co.nz 219,289 0:13:53
Yahoo.com 193,729 0:57:34
Microsoft.com 147,196 0:10:35
Xtrasite.co.nz 139,892 0:05:44
Source: Nielsen//NetRatings, at home panel, March 2000
* Note: A domain is a consolidation of multiple URLs

Table 2. Comparable Summary of Australia, New Zealand & US Internet statistics for March 2000

US

NZ

Internet Universe
(All individuals aged 2+ who have access to the Internet)
129.7 million
1.2
million

Active Internet
(All individuals aged 2+ who accessed the Internet during the reporting period)
82
million
565 thousand

Number of Surfing Sessions per person per month

19
16

Number of Pages viewed per person per month

670
462

Number of Pages viewed per surfing session per person

31
29

Duration of surfing session (in minutes)

31
30

ACNielsen eRatings.com is a venture between ACNielsen (NYSE:ART) and NetRatings (NASDAQ:NTRT). ACNielsen is the global leader in delivering market research, information and analysis to the consumer products and services industries, and NetRatings is the leading provider of Internet audience measurement technology and analysis. Through the Nielsen//NetRatings service, ACNielsen eRatings.com is creating the first global service for tracking audiences, advertising and user activity on the Internet in more than 30 countries worldwide.

###

Glossary of terms
Internet Universe all members (two years of age or older) of households which currently have access to the Internet
Active Internet Universe all members of the Internet Universe who actually use the Internet during the period
URL web site address (e.g. www.acnielsen.co.nz)
Domain a group of websites and pages that end with the same.domain-name plus ".co.nz" or ".com" The domain includes all the web pages that are under that domain (e.g. yahoo.com, msn.com)
Property a consolidation of multiple domains and URLs owned by the listed property. Property is usually the highest level of aggregation. (e.g. Yahoo!, MSN)
Unique Site a unique URL (e.g. www.acnielsen.com, www.yahoo.com, www.bbc.co.uk)
At-home Internet audience panel monitoring usage at home (rather than ‘at work’)

Editors’ note:
Visit www.nielsen-netratings.com for further information on the Nielsen//NetRatings service. Find out more about ACNielsen on www.acnielsen.com

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