NEW YORK (December 15, 2010) – Do kids have influence on which tech gadgets wind up under the Christmas tree this year? Kids may think they know more than their parents about consumer electronics, but Mom and Dad are not always listening to them. When it comes to purchases of big-ticket items such as computers, TV’s and digital cameras, some parents believe that kids should be seen and not heard, with more parents relying on price and online reviews than on their kids’ opinions, according to two new connected studies released today by ConsumerSearch.com, part of the About Group and conducted by Harris Interactive.
ConsumerSearch.com, a Web site that does the homework for consumers, helping them to make informed shopping decisions, and Harris Interactive conducted the survey in late November. Polling more than 1,654 total respondents, including 300 parents of kids aged12-17 and 1,354 kids aged 8-18, the survey determines how much influence tweens and teens have on their parents’ purchasing decisions. Highlights include:
- Price is the biggest influence on parents when it comes to choosing brands and models of consumer electronics. Parents say they compare prices (72%), read product reviews online (53%) and visit product Web sites (51%) to help them decide which electronics to buy.
- Only 15% of parents ask their children for their opinions on computers and electronics. More moms (18%) than Dads (11%) to turn to kids for advice.
- Teens and tweens recognize that their influence is minimal. Only eight percent claim that their parents buy what they tell them to. Twenty-one percent say that their parents “don’t ask me what I think, and just buy what they want.”
- Kids win at gaming. Sixty-three percent of parents think that their kids know more than they do about game consoles. But parents still think they know best about other electronics, with only 14% believing their kids know more about 3D TV’s and 13% about HD camcorders.
- The majority of kids (52%) admit that their parents know more about digital cameras.
- Is 2011 the year of 3D TV? Kids hope so, with 20% of teens and tweens wishing their families would purchase a 3D TV in 2011. However, only eight percent of parents say they intend to buy one in the coming year.
“Kids may have influence when it comes to some purchases, but mom and dad hold the checkbook when it comes to big-ticket purchases,” said Christine Frietchen, editor-in-chief, ConsumerSearch.com. “At the end of the day, parents are making the most of online resources and no doubt looking to their own peers for views and reviews.”
These surveys were conducted online within the United States by Harris Interactive on behalf of ConsumerSearch.comfrom November 16-18, 2010 among 300 parents of children age 8-17 years, and from November 17-29 among 1,354 children ages 8-18 years.
About The About Group
The About Group comprises the Web sites About.com, ConsumerSearch.com, UCompareHealthCare.com and CalorieCount.com. About.com is a valuable resource for content that helps users solve the large and small needs of everyday life. ConsumerSearch.com analyzes expert and user-generated consumer product reviews and recommends the best products to purchase based on the findings.
UCompareHealthCare.com provides dynamic interactive tools that enable users to measure the quality of healthcare services. CalorieCount.com is an online resource that helps users solve the everyday challenges of losing weight and living a healthy lifestyle.
The About Group is part of The New York Times Company (NYSE: NYT), a leading media company with 2009 revenues of $2.4 billion, which includes The New York Times, the International Herald Tribune, The Boston Globe, 15 other daily newspapers and more than 50 Web sites, including NYTimes.com, Boston.com and About.com. The Company’s core purpose is to enhance society by creating, collecting and distributing high-quality news, information and entertainment.