Capital Solutions 4.7.14

It’s easy to imagine who is a part of the internet and social media platforms: a young, 20 to 30 something year-old that happens to be using a tablet and a light laptop in a cafe. Data collected by the Pew Research Center however, suggests a much broader audience engaged on the internet. According to Pew, “Today, 59% of seniors report they go online—a six-percentage point increase in the course of a year—and 47% say they have a high-speed broadband connection at home. ” Pew examined that while there was a general increase in the demographic of senior citizens going online and using cell phones, they (seniors) could be divided between two groups. “The first group (which leans toward younger, more highly educated, or more affluent seniors) has relatively substantial technology assets, and also has a positive view toward the benefits of online platforms. The other (which tends to be older and less affluent, often with significant challenges with health or disability) is largely disconnected from the world of digital tools and services, both physically and psychologically,” reported Pew. On a general level, there is an increase in the number of American adults using the internet on a regular basis (87%) and a greater number of individuals that are using cell phones and smart phones.

With that being said, businesses of all sizes should consider the internet to be a valuable area for expansion over the next few years. First, if a business owner is attempting to appeal baby boomers, they may want to shy away from smart phones and focus on social networking sites. According to Pew, around 18% of Americans over the age of 65 own a smart phone, compared to 58% of all American adults. Almost half of seniors however, utilize online social networking (although a mere 6% use Twitter.) Businesses should look to three traits for expanding their web presence. According to Jakob Nielsen, co-founder and principal of Nielsen Norman Group, there are three effective ways to gauge your effectiveness on the internet when appealing to customers outside of social media. The three different methods involve: (1) utilizing search engine optimization to make sure that the company in question comes up near the top of a search; (2) the number of unique visitors, or potential new customers, that come to a business’ website; and (3) the length of time and the number of different pages that a potential customer clicks on in the given website for the business. Capital Solutions can provide quick capital for businesses hoping to pursue growth via web expansion. For more information, call 1-800-901-3299 or press the Contact tab.