Women’s choices in buying and planning for the family, as well as pursuing their own interests, have a major impact online.

According to some researchers women have been the majority among US Internet users for a number of years. They now make up 51.6% of the US online population and nearly 100 million American women will be online by 2008.

"For all online players, the rising influence of females online is something that can’t be ignored," says Debra Aho Williamson, eMarketer Senior Analyst.

Obviously, where women go, particularly to do their online shopping and buying, is vitally important to marketers.

New figures from comScore Media Metrix indicate that women’s activities online are shifting.

The data show that more women are going online to find multimedia content, check classified ads, listen to radio and (men take note) read maps.

Women are primary shoppers for many households and they make up the majority of visitors to leading online retail sites, including JCPenney, Federated Department Stores, Overstock.com, Target and Wal-Mart.

"The increasing presence of women online is having a profound effect on content, commerce and marketing," says Ms. Williamson. "In the offline world, women are said to influence more than three-quarters of household expenditures. That level of influence may not have been fully felt online yet, but it soon will be."

More here.