Almost two in five South African adults now have access to the Internet, according to new research conducted by the online publishing body, the Digital Media and Marketing Association (DMMA), together with Echo Consultancy.
The two organisations estimate that South Africa’s total Internet population has reached 14m users, representing 39% of the adult population.
The figure was derived from the All Media Products Survey (Amps) and validated by Effective Measure, the DMMA’s measurement provider for digital audience data.
“This comes as good news for advertisers, as it reflects a larger Internet audience than basic Amps levels,” says DMMA steering committee chairman Jarred Cinman. “The validated figure of 14m users is significant as it indicates that a greater percentage of South Africans are consuming media online than previously reported.”
Echo Consultancy MD Peter Langschmidt explains that Effective Measure derives its figures through tagged sites, which count unique browsers. Some users access the Internet from more than one device, and this is counted as three unique browsers.
“But marketers are interested in reaching people not machines. Therefore, we weighted Effective Measure’s unique brower data against Amps’ multiple device usage and the Effective Measure panel to translate the number from browsers to people,” Langschmidt says.
“In the case of Internet penetration in South Africa from Amps, there is most definitely respondent confusion regarding Internet usage, with many respondents not equating websites accessed via their mobile phones with Internet browsing,” he says. “Through recoding Amps to take mobile access into account, we were able to provide a figure that matched the Effective Measure online universe.”
The time periods of the Amps and Effective Measure data sets were matched, going back to June 2012. The latter’s unique browsers accessing the Internet at that time was 15m. This was reduced by 23% using the Effective Measure panel and Amps multiple device calculations to arrive at a figure of 11,6m monthly internet users. The Amps figures were recalibrated to include Web browsing via mobile phones as well as computers, which increased the numbers from 8,6m to 11,3m monthly Internet users.
“In the middle of last year, Effective Measure reported that there were 15m unique browsers,” Langschmidt says. “This number has grown to 20m. By applying the derived formula, we can say that that these 20m unique browsers represent just under 14m adult users.” — (c) 2013 NewsCentral Media