Research type 
Year of report 

Summary of findings


Profile of Site Visitors

  • In terms of age, the profile of visitors to the RUThinking site was on target with around half being aged 14-16 years old.
  • In terms of gender, however, the split between boys and girls was unbalanced, with girls accounting for 80% of site visitors.

Visiting behaviour

  • Around 3 in 5 visitors had heard about the site via the Campaign, with radio being the best medium for raising awareness (33%), followed by press articles, adverts (unspecified), other sites and search engines.
  • Over a third (36%) came to browse the site with most others looking for some form of advice or information (43%).
  • The level of repeat visiting was low, but higher than that found on other Government Campaign sites and in relation to the Playingsafely website.

Website Ratings

  • Overall opinion of the site was rated slightly below average along with likelihood to revisit the site.
  • The main area of weakness centred on not providing the right information for the user, which led to many not finding what they were looking for.
  • Spontaneous comments suggested that site content was lacking depth (particularly on details of contraception and where to obtain them, general sex, pregnancy/abortion and STIs).
  • There was also a requirement for more contact with professionals and peer groups. An FAQs section was also requested by some.
  • In terms of prompted future services, an online expert to answer questions was most preferred.
  • At lower levels, some also wanted a condom ordering service, a chatroom and more stories/case studies.


  • Include more campaign activity aimed at encouraging teenage boys to visit the site
  • Improve depth of information, particularly on: - contraception (methods and how to obtain) - pregnancy & abortion - STIs - general sex information - Consider providing an online expert
  • Other considerations: - FAQs section - More case studies - Chatroom

Research objectives


Specific objectives of the research were to:

  • develop a user profile of individuals visiting the website
  • determine reasons for visiting
  • establish what visitors thought of the site and how it could be improved
  • investigate requirements for future services.



To address the problem of increasing teenage pregnancy rates in England, in November 2000 the Government launched the Teenage Pregnancy Campaign. The core target is teenagers and a number of advertising channels are used; magazines, radio, ambient media, as well as PR, local activity in the field etc. The RUThinking website was set up to act as a source of information and help on the subject along with a telephone helpline (Sexwise). This research was commissioned to obtain feedback from site visitors and use the information to help redesign the RUThinking website.

Research participants


A random sample of internet users were asked to complete questionnaire

Audience Summary





Ethnicity was not recorded in the questionnaire



In terms of age, the profile of visitors to the RUThinking site was on target with around half being aged 14-16 years old. 84% were aged under 18 years or younger, the average age being 16.

Social Class


Social class was not recorded in the questionnaire.


Data collection methodology


Other data collection methodology


The survey was conducted online using a short pop up questionnaire which appeared to a sample of visitors after they left the homepage. 27% of those shown the survey went on to complete the first question with 40% of these going on to complete the survey. All site visitors were eligible for the research, including under 16s.

Note: COI Communications obtained special dispensation from the Market Research Society for researching minors without parental permission.

Sample size


Overall, the survey was shown to 3844 visitors of whom 1038 answered the first question. 445 people went on to complete the whole survey.

Fieldwork dates


All fieldwork was conducted between 22nd May to 5th June 2003

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Research agency

Virtual Surveys Limited

COI Number


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