Which country leads the world in digital? Many might be tempted to answer that the US does, but the answer actually depends on what aspect of “digital” you’re looking at. When it comes to Internet penetration, the US has much higher rates than in the EU, 88 percent compared with 71 percent. But dig a little deeper and the picture changes.
Europe is leading
When it comes to customer preferences for digital channels, Europe is way ahead. Recent McKinsey research examined the digital customer experience in the mobile telecom sector and found that European customers are more open to digital services than their US counterparts. Almost half of them would be happy to manage their relationships with providers entirely through digital channels, for instance, compared with fewer than a third of customers in the US. In both sales and customer care, levels of awareness and usage of self-serve digital channels (such as mobile apps) and live digital channels (such as web chat) are already markedly higher in Europe than in the US.
PCs remain the most used device for the majority of online activities. More than 60% of daily internet users logged on to a PC to visit general or ecommerce portals, search engines, blogs and forums, as well as digital versions of newspapers and other traditional media. Social networking was an exception, though; 51.0% of web users who checked in daily at social sites used a smartphone to do so. Tablets tended to take a back seat to other devices, but between 12% and 22% of web users used a tablet daily, depending on the task.
After a rather slow start, digital media are finally reaching full maturity in Spain. The country’s digital culture is advancing in parallel with an improving economic climate.
Frequency of internet use has risen sharply, for example. The percentage of Spain’s web users going online daily, or almost daily, jumped from 83.1% in 2015 to 96.2% in 2016. Social networks saw gains too. While 57.8% of respondents checked in at social sites at least six days a week in 2015, that share rose to 66.0% in 2016.