"The Net Generation": Children and Young People, the Internet and Online Shopping

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Abstract:

Children have long been acknowledged as playing an important role within family purchasing decisions, with their ability to directly and indirectly influence family purchasing. In addition to their role within the family, children are seen as an important group of consumers in their own right due to their individual purchasing power. Over recent years the use of the Internet by children has increased and they are commonly portrayed as confident and able users of Internet technology. It is important to understand how the Internet will be used by children as an additional shopping medium and to explore the issues surrounding this use. This paper reports on data collected during an in-depth study exploring family purchasing behaviour and the role of the Internet. The findings discussed address a specific and important aspect of the data, namely the use of the Internet as a shopping medium by children for purchases for themselves. A number of important themes were identified including; use of the Internet as an information source, factors surrounding purchase influence, payment barriers and children's level of online consumer skills.

Keywords: CHILDREN; FAMILY DECISION; MAKING; ONLINE SHOPPING; YOUNG PEOPLE

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1362/026725703321663764

Publication date: April 1, 2003

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