Another interesting piece of number crunching from the people at Hitwise.
Robin Goad began the week looking at the Ashes effect on the UK internet landscape (mixing business and pleasure, I suspect). He ends it by looking at the relative power of aggregators in disseminating the stuff of news producers.
The peg? The entrance of a relative newcomer in the shape of Bing News Search. And Bing is straight in at, er, number nine:
Top 10 News Aggregators in the UK
- Google News UK (36% of visits)
- NewsNow (20%)
- Digg (12%)
- Stumble Upon (9%)
- Ezine Articles (7%)
- Google News (6%)
- Google Reader (4%)
- Reddit (2%)
- Bing News Search (2%)
- NetVibes (1%)
(source: Hitwise, w/e 22 August 2009)
Last week just over three quarters of Bing News Search’s traffic came from other Microsoft properties, particularly MSN UK and the main Bing search page.
So where are these aggregators sending people? Google News is largely sending people where you would expect. The news sites with the largest reach (BBC, Telegraph and Mail Online among them) are receiving most referrals.
Bing is different. BBC remains number one but is followed by Fox News while Times of India features at number four.
– What Would Google Do? Fail Quietly.
– ‘I Consider Google News A Gift, Newspapers Consider It Theft.’
So, it turns out that we don’t just follow the over-by-over stuff – fingers guiltily poised on Alt-Tab* – when we’re at work.
Hitwise’s Robin Goad has been crunching the all-important numbers and it would seem that the Ashes decider had fans logging on in unprecedented numbers. On a beautiful summer Sunday, no less.
Sky Sports enjoyed its best spike ever, boasting 0.74 per cent of all UK internet traffic. For the BBC, only last year’s Beijing Olympics outdid the 1.12 per cent it received yesterday.
Meanwhile, Hitwise’s category of 100 specialist cricket sites reached its highest level for three years yesterday, collectively accounting for 1.11 per cent of all UK visits.
Doubtless, a Monday finish would have resulted in even more spectacular numbers.
By comparison, Australian cricket websites suffered a dip, down to 0.12 per cent.
Must be the time difference.
*For the uninitiated the Alt-Tab key combination will take a PC user from an incriminating, non-work website to an impressive spreadsheet in under 0.01 seconds.
– What’s Wrong With This Telegraph Front Page?
So this is what we think we know – after the Sichuan earthquake and the terrorist attacks on Mumbai, the aftermath of the Iranian elections marks the latest coming of age for Twitter.
As a vechicle breaking news and real-time updates the microblogging site has once again shown it can leave the 24-hour news networks in its wake.
Sure the rolling news channels (notably the late-to-the-story CNN) and the papers do an invaluable job curating and repackaging much of it but the raw material and the original narrative belongs to Twitter.
But what’s really interesting is not the battle between Twitter and the established media but between Twitter and its online rivals.
Some fascinating number-crunching by Heather Dougherty of Hitwise reveals that one in four people searching for “Iran election” headed to the microblogging service.
The figures are for the week ending 20 June and the data is US-only but the results are significant: this is the first time I can recall Twitter beating Google News in a straight race.
Continue reading How Twitter Left Google News Trailing Over Iran
While on this side of the Atlantic Facebook has been enjoying an upsurge of traffic thanks to its vanity publishing project (aka Facebook usernames), on the other side of the Atlantic the social networking site is showing its age .
The ever readable Hitwise blog looks at the Facebook user base by age range to see how it has changed over the last 12 months. And this is what it found:
18 – 24 year-olds -19%
25 – 34 year-olds +12%
35 – 44 year-olds +7%
Hitwise’s Bill Tancer speculates that these figures, coupled with a dramatic upsurge in traffic last month, indicate that Facebook has hit the mainstream. He then ponders:
If that is true, and early adopters are, in the case of social networking, the 18-24 year old crowd, where are younger Internet users flocking to today?
Of course, the Hitwise numbers are relative – and Facebook still has a very sizeable young audience – but perhaps it’s time to look at the average age of the Twittersphere.
Twitter started with a relatively mature audience, certainly in the UK, but I’d speculate that the celeb takeover (call it the Kutcher effect) has had 18 – 24 year-olds all aTwitter.