Kindle owners more likely to shop online

Amazon's tablet business plan appears to be hitting its stride, based on data from Consumer Intelligence Research Partners (CIRP).

A recent survey revealed that people who own Amazon Kindle devices — the Fire tablet, original Kindle, Paperwhite series — are more inclined to purchase other items online.

The online retail giant eats about $18 (£11) for every Kindle Fire sold at full retail price, due to manufacturing costs and other factors. But the company has said repeatedly that it aims to make up for it through sales of Amazon ebooks, apps, and other products via those gadgets.

Without specifying exactly what people are buying on the site — be it ebooks, Kindle accessories, lawn furniture, or luggage — CIRP reported that 40 per cent of all Amazon shoppers are Kindle device owners.

In fact, those who own an Amazon-branded tablet typically buy items from an average of 6.4 different Amazon departments; 50 per cent go as far as to shop in seven or more categories. Comparatively, non-Kindle device owners stick to an average 5.5 departments.

CIRP estimates that Amazon Kindle device owners spend about $1,233 (£755) per year, compared to $790 (£484) annually for other customers, according to co-founder Josh Lowitz. "They do so because Kindle device owners buy over 50 percent more frequently than other customers," he said.

Almost 30 per cent of Amazon.com customers own a Kindle Fire tablet, while another 21 per cent own a Kindle e-reader. Meanwhile, 9 per cent of customers own both, "suggesting how well Amazon has done to drive sales of what amounts to a portal to Amazon.com," Lowitz said.

CIRP co-founder Mike Levin agreed, saying that the Kindle Fire tablet provides easy online access to everything Amazon sells, while Kindle e-readers have "become the way that Amazon customers buy books, Amazon's original product line," he said.

Amazon did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

In January 2012, RBC Capital reported that over the course of three years, each Kindle Fire sold could earn Amazon $136 (£83), based solely on peripheral purchases.