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* Just under 8 million people in the UK visited an e-commerce site

* Rail chaos leads to growth in visitors to railtrack.co.uk

* People gearing up for Christmas as price comparison site visits on the increase

London, 24 November 2000

Latest monthly figures for Internet use in the UK reveal that:

* The number of home Internet users in October was 10,149,000, up from 9,826,000 in September

* October was the busiest month this year for visitors to e-commerce sites, with 7.9 million unique users visiting an e-tailing site during the month

* Over half of these (4.4 million) went on to make a secure connection

* Tesco.com achieved its highest number of visitors to date, with almost 600,000 unique visitors in October

* The popularity of price comparison sites continues, with the number of visitors to shopsmart.com growing by 200,000 in the last 6 months

* Over 500,000 people visited railtrack.co.uk, which was the most visited transport site

E-commerce

The number of visitors to e-commerce sites grew to 7.9 million people in October, exactly one million more visitors than the previous month. October became the busiest month this year for visitors to e-tailing sites, possibly fuelled by the pre-Christmas rush, and the growing consumer confidence in shopping online. 78.1% of all home Internet users visited an e-commerce website, with over half (4.4 million) going on to make a secure connection.

October was a good month for tesco.com, with more than 176,000 additional users visiting the site since September, and total visitors numbering just under 600,000. In terms of visitors to mall sites, tesco.com is still "stickiest", with visitors spending an average of 15.9 minutes on the site, and displaying 36.9 unique pages.

Popularity of comparison shopping sites increases

Visitors to sites where consumers can compare prices online has risen over the last few months. This will come as good news for EasyGroup who have just announced the launch of their online comparison site, easyValue.com. Shopsmart.com is the leading price comparison site in the UK, with the number of unique visitors growing by 200,000 over the last six months, to 466,800 in October. Their advertising relationship with bananalotto.co.uk has been an excellent way of driving traffic to the site: bananalotto.co.uk is the second most visited gambling site in the UK, and secured 629,000 unique visitors in October. Kelkoo.com, the French price comparison site, is the second most visited site of this type in the UK, achieving 130,000 unique visitors.

Surge in visitors to rail information site

Railtrack.co.uk achieved its highest reach of the year so far, with over 500,000 Internet users visiting the site in October (5.2% of all home Internet users). The site, which was heavily used to access up-to-the minute rail information, beat britishairways.com and easyjet.com to become the most visited transport site.

About NetValue

NetValue is the European leader in Internet research, effectively measuring home Internet activity and behaviour online by way of panels. We currently have operations in the UK, France, Germany, Sweden, Spain, Denmark, US, Mexico, Hong Kong, Singapore, Korea, China and Taiwan.

Our cutting edge technology, NetMeter, is unique in the marketplace: it records and tracks ALL applications available on the Internet as it operates at Internet protocol level (and measures not just web usage but also: email, FTP, audio, video etc). NetValue offers the only product able to track Internet user activity in such minute detail, and in real time.

UK clients include MSN, Yahoo!, Excite, Lycos, Freeserve, LineOne, BSkyB, QXL, NTL, ZDNet, Nationwide, Cadbury, Buy.com, Argos, StreetsOnline, Salomon Smith Barney, BNP Paribas, AKQA and Profero.

Methodology

Panels are recruited by Taylor Nelson Sofres on an exclusive and global basis, allowing for seamless international reporting. An establishment survey quantifies and profiles the number of Internet users in each country. The survey gathers both Internet related data (e.g. level of Internet penetration, main ISP used, how long the household has been connected etc.), as well as demographic and socio-economic data. Using an identical process for all countries involved, TNS determines the characteristics of the Internet user population through weekly telephone interviews. In the UK, 32,000 interviews are carried out annually.

For more information, please visit: http://www.netvalue.com


Press contacts

Jannie Cahill, Marketing Manager

Tel: 020 7479 5761

Email: jannie@netvalue.com


James Sherwood or Joshua Van Raalte

Le Fevre Communications

Tel: 020 7563 6400

Email: netvalue@lefevre.co.uk

Tables omitted - please contact Jannie Cahill


Definitions


Domains

Are defined as a group of Web pages under the same name (i.e. Yahoo.co.uk comprises one domain)

E-commerce

Are defined as online transaction enabled. In general, this means the presence of secure connections such as SSL.

Internet user

A NetValue Internet user is an individual who has connected to the Internet at least once during the reference period

Mall sites

Non-specific retail sites (computers, appliances, apparel etc.)

Overall Ranking

Is determined by the mathematical average of the reach, number of days connected to the site per Internet user, unique and total pages viewed, time spent and user-sessions per Internet user. Sessions include all Web connections of more than 10 minutes

Properties

A coherent group of pages and domains 51% or more owned by the same company (i.e. ‘Yahoo’ comprises all Yahoo domains : yahoo.com, yahoo.co.uk, yahoo.de etc)

Reach

Reach is the percentage of unique visitors who visited a particular site at least once in the month

Secure connections

Secure connections, such as SSL, are used to ensure the confidentiality of information exchanged, in particular :

- when entering and transmitting credit card information

- when accessing online bank accounts

- when trading online

Time connected

Length of time (in minutes or hours) spent by an Internet user on pages from a domain or property

This press release was distributed by ResponseSource Press Release Wire on behalf of NetValue in the following categories: Consumer Technology, Personal Finance, Business & Finance, Computing & Telecoms, for more information visit https://pressreleasewire.responsesource.com/about.