As the number of Wi-Fi hotspots has spread across the country, they've turned the corner cafe into an extension of the office. More than 80 percent of Wi-Fi cafe users are connecting for some work, and 38 percent are making online purchases, according to a new study being released today from JiWire. The company operates a local-based Wi-Fi advertising network across 30,000 public hotspots.
In just the first six months of 2009, the number of monthly users at Wi-Fi hotspots across all venues grew 18.4 percent, according to the study. While most Wi-Fi users are at hotels and resorts, 10.5 percent are in cafes, the focus of JiWire’s inaugural Mobile Audience Insights Report.
Unlike transient Wi-Fi users in hotels and airports, the café user is habitual and local, with 85 percent of the audience connecting at least once a week and 29 percent daily. Cafe Wi-Fi users are also connecting for extended periods of time. More than two-thirds spend an hour or more, and 22 percent spend more than two hours.
"This is a local audience; 83 percent are connecting in their local markets," said David Staas, svp of marketing for JiWire.
Local cafe audiences are also a highly desirable ad target. More than 67 percent of users fall between the ages of 25 and 49; 74 percent are male; and two-thirds have a household income of $50,000 or higher. The largest segment of the audience is in business. Forty percent have management titles, and 19 percent are professional. A little over a fifth (or 23 percent) are students.
Conducted between April and June, the JiWire mobile report was based on data from 275,000 public Wi-Fi hotspots and a survey of more than 2,000 Wi-Fi users in cafes.