What Australians are searching for on social media to buy has changed dramatically over the past six months off the back of Covid-19. And women’s behaviour has changed more than men.
The research was conducted by Yellow (formerly Yellow Pages) in January and replicated in July.
The biggest hit areas are holidays, entertainment, music, movies, appliances, computers and games. Looking to buy clothes remained stable as did furniture, cosmetics, trades and accountants.
The only category that had a significant increase was the search for hairdressers up from 35 per cent to 38 per cent for women and up from 18 per cent to 24 per cent for men.
Of the products and services hardest hit, it was women whose behaviour changed the most:
Entertainment: women searching for entertainment options dropped 18% from 63% to 45%; men just 5% from 52% to 47%
Music: women dropped 15% from 47% to 32% but men dropped just 3% from 53% to 50%
Movies: women went from 60% to 48% whilst men actually increased from 52% to 56%
Clothing: searches were up 3% for women 69% to 72% but down for men from 38% to 32%
Appliances: women went from 51% to 39% a drop of 12% and men went from 55% to 46% a drop of 9%
Games: women dropped by more than half 29% down to 14% but men remained the same at 34%
The three categories to show similar behaviour were in researching for holidays with men down from 65% to 43% and women down from 65% to 46%; hospitality down 41% to 28% for men and 60% to 46% for women; and health services down from 31% to 24% for men and down 31% to 26% for women.
Hayley Jovanovic, chief marketing officer at Sensis, said one of the more surprising findings was that despite people working from home and home schooling their children there had been a significant drop in the searches for computers even though retailers were reporting dramatic spikes in sales.
“Men searching went from 41% to 28% and women 22% to just 7%. We think consumers simply went straight to a retailer and purchased without doing much research beforehand,” she said.
Catching up with family and friends
The research also showed the biggest drop in using social media was to catch up with family and friends – men down 16% and women 14%.
Getting news through social media was up 6% for men and 4% for women and 21% of men and 25% of women got Covid-19 updates via social media.
For some reason there was a spike in men following celebrities – nearly doubling from 8% to 15%. Less travel and going out led to an 8% drop in women sharing photos or videos through social media, although for men that dropped by just 3%
Since Covid-19, 44% of men and 47% of women say that they have increased the time spent on social media sites. Just 7% of men and 4% of women said they had decreased their time.
TikTok the big winner
TikTok has been the biggest winner of all the social media platforms, particularly for men. Usage has gone up three-fold from just 4% to 12%. It has also increased significantly for women going from 9% to 15%.
Men’s usage has also increased for Instagram (up 9% from 33% to 42%), LinkedIn (up 7% from 24% to 31%) and up 5% on Twitter (rom 22% to 27%).
Usage of Pinterest, Facebook, Snapchat, YouTube and Twitter saw very little change.
Men have used locked to increase their activity across all dating platforms – up from 2.6% to 3.9% on Bumble, from 1.8% to 2.4% on Hinge and from 4.6% to 6.3% on Tinder. Women on the other hand down from 2.9% on Bumble to 1.4%, down on Hinge from 2.3% to 2% and steady on Tinder from 4.2% to 4.3%
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