In part 2 of our online video study we wanted to better understand why people watch online videos, how they help their everyday life, what platforms they actually claim to use, what types of video content they like best, and what could keep them using platforms with mid-roll ads or blending paid ads and subscription fees.
We’ll start off with a few pieces of data that in hindsight probably would have been best placed in Part 1. If you haven’t read Part 1 of the study yet, please go read it before continuing, lots of fascinating insights there.
Smartphone vs. Desktop/Laptop vs. Tablet usage
We know that Smartphones are dominating the way Americans access the web, but how is that impacting online video? After all the video revolution started with Flash Video on desktop computers. We asked respondents which device type they believe was used for the majority of their online video viewing.
Do you think that you watch more videos on your smartphone, tablet, or on a laptop / desktop computer?
- Smartphone – 60%
- Desktop/Laptop – 27.81%
- Tablet – 12.82%
Why people watch online videos
In this section we sought to understand why consumers made a decision to watch video content online. The results provide a glimpse into the evolving world of online video which started out mostly as a fixture of time wasting and entertainment. While Entertainment still rules supreme; learning, making a purchase, and local news all got a significant volume of responses. Consumers also overwhelmingly responded that they want to watch online videos before booking travel or before hiring a service provider.
We drilled down into exactly what kind of videos consumers wanted to see before making a purchase with Review videos (testimonials) getting the most responses followed by How To videos, Instructional videos, and Assembly videos.
Why do you watch videos online?
- To be entertained – 77.95%
- To learn something new – 45.13%
- To make a purchase – 35.64%
- To keep up with local news – 31.79%
- To keep up with regional news – 28.46%
- To keep up with industry specific news – 25.13%
- To learn something new for work – 22.31%
When you purchase products online do you like to see videos about the product before you purchase?
- Yes – 75.90%
- No – 24.10%
When hiring a new service provider online do you like to see videos about the service before making a phone call or making reservations first?
- Yes – 63.08%
- No – 36.92%
Before booking travel accommodations do you like to see videos of the provider or destination first?
- Yes – 70.26%
- No – 29.74%
What type of videos to you like to watch before making a purchase decision?
- Review Videos – 42.82%
- How To / Walkthrough videos – 36.41%
- Instructional videos by the brand / product / service provider – 31.54%
- Assembly videos – 26.67%
- Unboxing videos – 23.59%
- Action videos – 20.77%
- Live Streaming Q&A videos – 17.18%
- Reaction videos – 16.41%
- Advertisement videos by the brand / product / service provider – 15.38%
- Fan made videos / trailers – 13.08%
- “Story” videos from a social media ‘influencer’ – 12.82%
- Videos with a giveaway / contest / raffle – 12.82%
- 360 degree videos – 11.79%
- Destruction videos – 9.49%
- Motion Graphic videos – 9.23%
- Hype videos – 7.44%
Popular Online Video Platforms
In this section of our study we wanted to determine based on mental recall which online video hosting / streaming platforms were the most popular with consumers. This might help represent brand strength more than actual usage, but still provides great insights into the world of online video. We also sought to understand the relationship between on-demand video websites and apps versus live streaming websites and apps.
When you watch videos online where do you watch them?
- YouTube – 76.92%
- Netflix – 61.03%
- Facebook – 41.79%
- Amazon Prime – 31.03%
- Hulu – 27.44%
- Snapchat – 22.82%
- Reddit – 14.87%
- HBO Now/Go – 11.28%
- Twitch.tv – 10%
- Vimeo – 7.95%
- LinkedIn – 5.13%
- DirecTV Now – 4.87%
- Imgur – 4.10%
- Daily Motion – 4.10%
- Vudu – 4.10%
- CBS All Access – 3.33%
- Crackle – 3.08%
- Playstation Vue – 3.08%
- FailArmy.com – 2.82%
- Funny or Die – 2.56%
- LiveStream.com – 2.56%
- DC Universe – 2.56%
- Sling TV – 2.31%
- Metacafe – 2.05%
- TheChive.com – 1.79%
- Mixer.com – 1.79%
- Philo TV – 1.79%
- Streamable – 1.54%
- Curiosity Stream – 1.54%
- Pluto TV – 1.54%
- YouNow – 1.54%
- Dry Bar Comedy – 1.54%
- UStream – 1.28%
- Vid.me – 1.03%
- Fails.tv – 1.03%
- Break.com – 0.77%
- Smashcast.com – 0.51%
- FuboTV – 0.26%
Live Streaming vs. On Demand
- On Demand – 54.62%
- No Preference – 27.95%
- Live Streaming – 17.44%
What is your preferred Live streaming platform?
- YouTube Live – 36.15%
- Facebook Live – 23.59%
- Twitch.tv – 13.85%
- Instagram Live – 11.79%
- YouNow – 3.08%
- LiveStream.com – 1.79%
- UStream – 1.54%
- SmashCast.tv – 0.77%
- Mixer.com – 0.77%
What streaming video subscription services have you purchased in the past year?
(note this does not represent new subscriptions, but overall subscriptions)
- Netflix – 67.69%
- Amazon Prime – 43.08%
- Hulu – 32.05%
- HBO Now/Go – 12.56%
- YouTube Premium – 9.49%
- DirecTV Now – 5.64%
- Vudu – 5.13%
- Sling TV – 4.10%
- Pluto TV – 4.10%
- Curiosity Stream – 3.85%
- Dry Bar Comedy – 3.59%
- CBS All Access – 3.59%
- Playstation Vue – 3.08%
- Philo TV – 2.31%
- DC Universe – 1.79%
- Fubo Premier – 1.54%
- Crunchyroll – 0.7%
Advertising and Online Video Streaming
As the world of internet video balloons and digs heavier into traditional video markets, the need for tech firms to find additional sources of revenue becomes paramount. This has brought up a conversation of incorporating ads into more traditional subscription services in a mixed model that would maximize revenues per viewer.
If a video streaming service you subscribe to decides to run ads during their video content, how likely are you to unsubscribe?
- Very likely – 23.59%
- Likely – 34.10%
- Neither likely nor unlikely – 27.95%
- Unlikely – 8.97%
- Very unlikely – 5.38%
If a video streaming service you pay to subscribe to decides to run ads, what factors would keep you from unsubscribing?
- If the streaming service allows me to skip past the ads – 41.28%
- If the ads only run before, during, or after content on a free version of the service and not my paid version – 29.74%
- If the ads run before the video content I want to watch – 28.72%
- If the ads run after the video content I want to watch – 25.90%
- If the ads are only on the dashboard or start menu of the service – 21.54%
- There is nothing that would convince me to continue paying for a streaming video service that has advertisements – 20.26%
- If the ads take up only a small portion of my screen – 18.21%
- If the ads run only during live streaming content such as a sports event or a music concert – 13.08%
- If the ads have no sound – 12.31%
- If the ads are only for other video content on the streaming service – 8.21%
If a mid-roll ad plays during a video you are watching, how likely are you to continue watching that video?
- Very likely – 15.90%
- Likely – 26.41%
- Neither likely nor unlikely -22.56%
- Unlikely – 20.77%
- Very unlikely – 14.36%
What factors impact your decision to continue watching a video after a mid-roll ad plays?
- If I can skip the mid-roll video advertisement – 52.05%
- If the video I’m watching has been very entertaining – 50.51%
- If the video advertisement is short – 41.54%
- If the video is really long and I want to finish it (such as a movie or webisode) – 31.03%
- If the video is short and there’s only a little bit left after the advertisement – 20.26%
- If the video advertisement is entertaining – 19.74%
- There is nothing that would convince me to continue watching a video with a mid-roll ad -10.51%
- If the video advertisement has no sound – 10.00%
Embed this Data on your Website
The data from part 2 is available in a long-form infographic ready to be embedded on your website or in a news article or blog post. Please use the following code. This code includes a link back to this study, you are free to edit that out of the code as you wish, but please provide a link back to this article or our homepage somewhere on the same page where the infographic is embedded.
<img src="https://winnerwinnerchickendinner.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/2019-consumer-online-video-viewing-habits-infographic.png" alt="2019 consumer video viewing habits infographic" title="infographic by Winner Winner Chicken Dinner on online video viewing habits"><br /><a href="https://winnerwinnerchickendinner.co/blog/online-video-viewing-habits-study-part-2/">2019 Consumer Video Viewing Habits Study</a> by <a href="https://winnerwinnerchickendinner.co/">Winner Winner Chicken Dinner</a>
We surveyed 390 Americans on their video viewing habits using the Survey Monkey Audience tool between late 2018 and spring of 2019. Our audience strived to match U.S. Census representation, but may have some small amounts of sample bias. To correct for any potential sample bias we collected responses from related groups on Reddit. We also attempted to control for any manipulation by online marketers and employees of video platforms by filtering out their results. We removed results from at least 1 Netflix employee and at least 3 employees of Google/YouTube to ensure they did not skew the study.
That’s our Online Video Viewing Habits Study for 2019. We’ll be conducting this research again in 2020. Note: You are free to reproduce any of the data or graphics on this page or in Part 1, however, we ask that you give appropriate credit to our study by providing hyperlinks to part 1 or part 2.