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SA Internet users in credit

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Research released this month shows that as many as 60% of South African Internet users may have credit cards – and 77% use Internet banking.

During the month of September 2011, the Digital Media and Marketing Association (DMMA) and Effective Measure conducted a joint research survey around South African Internet users and their finances. There were 1,051 respondents from a survey that ran across over 400 websites.

The survey asked five questions relating to the use of credit services, research and application for credit services online, Internet banking, insurance products owned and preferred in-store purchasing methods.

The average South African Internet user has good access to credit with over 60% of them owning a credit card. More than half of the respondents with monthly household incomes greater than R12 000 have credit cards. This figure increases to around 75% when monthly household incomes are above R16 000.

Internet banking is also very popular with 77% of users having used this service. As users earn more they are more likely to use Internet banking but even from a monthly household income of R12 000 we see over 70% of respondents use the service.

Surprisingly few respondents have researched or applied for financial services online, with 55% of respondents stating they have not used the internet to research or apply for a home loan, vehicle finance, a bank account, a credit card, a personal loan or overdraft. Researching or applying for bank accounts or credit cards was the most favoured when it came to this activity, at 23% and 20% respectively.

Cash and debit cards are the most popular way to pay for everyday in-store grocery purchases with cash at 63% and debit cards at 60%. More than 75% of people with a household income under R9 000 prefer to pay cash when purchasing grocery items in store.

Boys definitely like their toys with males being 90% more likely than females to have researched or applied for vehicle finance online. Women also keep the store account stereotype going by being 57% more likely than their male counterparts to purchase an everyday in-store grocery item using a store card or account.

Insurance is definitely the necessary evil with about 25% of respondents not owning any form of vehicle, household or life / disability / income protection insurance. That said, over 60% of respondents who have a monthly household income above R6 000 do have some form of insurance. This figure increases to over 80% when monthly household income increases to R16 000.

Home loans are evidently still hard to come by, with only 36% of respondents having home loans. However, more than half of the respondents with household incomes greater than R30 000 a month have home loans which is evidence of the fact that you still need to earn significantly more than the South African average to have a good chance of securing a loan.

Table 1 below shows the data and questions asked.

Do you have and use any of the following credit services in your personal capacity?

Total

Male

Female

Home Loan

36%

40%

31%

Vehicle Finance

33%

36%

29%

Credit Card

60%

63%

56%

Personal Loan

26%

27%

24%

Overdraft

27%

30%

23%

None of the above

26%

23%

29%

Have you ever used the Internet to research or applied for any of the following items online in your personal capacity

Total

Male

Female

A home loan

18%

20%

15%

Vehicle Finance

19%

24%

13%

A bank account

23%

24%

21%

A credit card

20%

22%

17%

A personal loan

17%

15%

19%

Overdraft

7%

8%

5%

None of the above

55%

52%

59%

Do you use Internet banking?

Total

Male

Female

Yes, via my computer

54%

52%

57%

Yes, via my cell phone

16%

16%

15%

Yes, I use both

24%

27%

20%

No

23%

23%

23%

Do you have any of the following insurance types in your personal capacity

Total

Male

Female

Vehicle insurance

61%

66%

55%

Household insurance

52%

58%

45%

Life insurance / disability insurance /salary protection insurance

61%

68%

53%

No

23%

20%

27%

How do you usually pay for your everyday in store grocery purchases

Total

Male

Female

Cash

63%

67%

58%

Credit card

31%

35%

25%

Store card or store account

9%

7%

11%

Debit card

60%

57%

63%

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