Study: Daytime Is Web’s Prime Time

NEW YORK The Internet is the only medium consumed during the day for nearly three in 10 workers, according to a new study. That finding supports the popular belief that daytime for the Web is comparable to prime time for television, according to the Online Publishers Association.

The research, conducted by Millward Brown IntelliQuest on behalf of the New York-based trade organization, was based on the behavior of 1,416 Internet users, of which 1,053 had accessed the Web from work and 363 had logged on from somewhere other than work in the past 30 days.

The study also found that Internet usage by daypart varies by demographics. For instance, 81 percent of top-level professionals are on the Web in the morning before lunch. In general, this group exceeds all other at-work users in terms of Internet usage by anywhere between 5-13 percentage points.

Gender differences also exist among at-work Web surfers, with a greater number of men than women logging on during most weekday dayparts. The biggest disparity occurs from 6-8 a.m., when 52 percent of men are online versus 39 percent of women. That gap closes during the morning before lunch when the highest percentage of men (77 percent) and women (68 percent) are on the Web.

Online activity also varies based on age and gender. Working women, for instance, avidly check the weather during the day and use the Internet to shop in the evenings. Younger workers show greater interest in world or local news than business news during the day, whereas older workers are more apt to check stocks after the market closes.