'Sharing economy' triples amongst British consumers

15/06/2016

There has been a dramatic shift in Brits turning to their peers to access goods and services via sharing economy, increasing three times in 2016 compared to 2015, according to new research.

The study, frim Hitwise, a divison of Connexity, found an increasing number of older Brits turning to sharing services.

Airbnb and Love Home Swap, amongst other similar sites, perhaps surprisingly receive the majority of visits from digital migrants (those aged over 35), whilst the overall demand for peer-to-peer exchange is most popular amongst digital natives (those aged between 18 and 34), who are 60 per cent more likely than the average Brit to use space sharing sites overall.

Space sharing brands with greatest share of visits from digital natives:

• Couch Surfing (36%)
• Flat Club (25%)
• Vrmumi (4%)

Space sharing brands with greatest share of visits from digital migrants:

• Air BnB (7%)
• Love Home Swap (28%)

When it comes to financial sharing, Brits over 34 are circumventing traditional banking institutions and exploring collaborative investment options online, representing more than double the number of visits to FundingCircle and almost triple the number of visits to Rebuilding Society over digital natives.

Crowdfunding services like Kickstarter, which receives 65% of visits from millennials, culturally reflect the values of these 18- 35 year olds, who are more willing to fund the projects they believe in.

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Financial sharing brands with greatest share of visits from digital natives:

• Kickstarter (32%)
• Indiegogo (12%)

Financial sharing brands with greatest share of visits from digital migrants:

• Rebuilding Society (295%)
• Funding Circle (186%)
• Rate Setter (175%)

Today marks the launch of Connexity’s Data Day Britain report which highlights the three key areas of the UK’s online internet consumption and behaviour:

o Live – The sharing economy is one of the fastest growing sectors of the internet, driven by both digital natives and digital migrants

o Work – Hitwise found that more than 4.1m Brits created “how-to” queries in the first three months of 2016 and 1.3 million visited an online learning sites like FutureLearn, Coursera or Udemy in that period.

o Play – Digital natives are looking for experiences online, being 21 per cent more likely to search for concerts whereas digital migrants are using the internet to plan their hobbies
Nigel Wilson, managing director at Hitwise said: “As one of the fastest growing sectors of the internet, now is the most exciting time for the sharing economy. As we see the industry bleed into more and more sectors, brands and retailers need to be aware of the UK’s growing hunger for collaboration, whether that’s through sharing your sofa or financially supporting an entrepreneur. The Hitwise research also highlights brands should avoid presuming they know their audience and ensure they are targeting the right people, with the right content.”

Methodology

Hitwise sources data from a range of panel providers which allows the monitoring of three million people across the internet, within the UK on a daily basis. The internet behaviours are sampled and weighted using algorithms to be representative of the entire UK population.

Read the full report here

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