Market research firm eMarketer released a new report today that examines how men behave differently than women online. Despite being a minority both in US population and online, men are still a large and often (according to the report) 'overlooked' segment of Internet users. The report stresses that gender informs online behavior more than other factors, such as race or ethnicity.

Some results of the study? Men visit more sites and stay online longer, use social networks as much or more than women and are more likely to access the Internet from a mobile device.

From the report:

  • eMarketer estimates there are 95.9 million males online in 2009, or 48.2% of the Internet population, compared with 103.2 million females.
  • Although the US Internet population will continue to grow, by 2013 males will make up just 47.9% of the online population, and at 105.9 million users will still be the minority.

Men spent, on average, 4.4 hours longer online than women. They are also overall less likely to be 'put off' by something they find online, and are more tolerant of advertising and branding than women. Finally, fewer men in the study said they have 'never' been online, only 15% of males compared to 20% of females.

The report covers a lot more information in-depth, but the summary already hints at key differences between how men and women approach Internet use and how long they are willing to remain engaged before choosing a different activity.

Although we had a hard time swallowing that men are an overlooked minority of Internet users, upon further reflection it does seem like a lot of marketing analysis goes toward finding the motivations of other online groups. Even in our coverage at ReadWriteWeb, we have talked about women and multitasking, and how age plays a role in Internet use, but not much specifically about men.

Well.. OK, that's not entirely true. We did cover this study by browser maker Opera last year. But it looks like the results of that study just serve to reinforce the findings of the eMarketer report.