Half of all European web users visit newspaper sites: Facebook links driving growth

23/01/2012

Of the 379.4m Europeans who went online in November 2011, nearly half (47.8%) visited at least one newspaper site,, with a considerable number visiting the top 5 newspaper sites preceded by a visit to Facebook, according to new research. The study, from comScore, assessed Internet usage in 49 European markets aggregated into the European region. The Daily Mail attracted the largest online audience with 20.1m unique visitors, followed by the Guardian at 15.7m unique visitors.

The UK newspapers were followed by Turkish newspapers Hürriyet and Milliyet and German newspaper Bild, as each attracted around 10m unique visitors.

At least 12% of them visited the Google Sites prior to visiting the top 5 newspaper sites, while at least 10% visited Facebook before heading for the newspaper sites.

Nearly 1 in 2 Europeans Visit Newspaper Sites

In November 2011, 181.5 million unique people in Europe visited Newspaper sites, an increase of 9 percent from the previous year.

The Daily Mail continued to attract the largest audience at 20.1 million unique visitors, followed by the Guardian at 15.7 million unique visitors. Turkish newspapers Hürriyet and Milliyet and German newspaper Bild rounded out the top five Newspaper properties, with each attracting approximately 10 million unique visitors.

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An analysis of the sites visited by Europeans prior to visiting the top 5 Newspaper sites shows that Google Sites preceded at least 12 percent of visits to the top 5 Newspaper sites, with a significantly higher percentage seen for the Daily Mail and the Guardian (more than 23 percent of inbound site traffic). At least 10 percent of visits are preceded by a visit to Facebook, second only to Google Sites. (This data includes both direct referrals from Facebook links and visits initiated by direct user navigation following a visit to Facebook.)

Interestingly, the percentage of traffic to these sites preceded by a visit to Facebook has significantly increased in each case, highlighting both Facebook’s growing prominence in the European web landscape and its increasing ability to drive referral traffic.

The percentage of inbound site traffic preceded by a Facebook visit was highest at Turkish site Milliyet, where it accounted for nearly a fifth of traffic (18.9 percent).

Facebook visitation also preceded a significant percentage of inbound traffic to the Daily Mail and the Guardian, with both sites at approximately 13 percent, while German newspaper site Bild.de saw an even higher share (14.8 percent).

Milliyet, the fifth largest European Newspaper site, demonstrated the highest point change in such traffic (9-percentage point increase), followed closely by the Guardian (8-percentage point increase).

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Fastest Growing Properties in Europe

Google Sites continued to rank as the top European web property in November with 347.3 million unique visitors, reaching 91.5 percent of the total European Internet audience. Meanwhile, Russian social network VKontakte continued to display the highest average engagement amongst the top properties, with European visitors spending 438.9 minutes (7.3 hours) on the site. Amongst the fastest growing properties in Europe from October to November were the home improvement retailer Kingfisher (up 21 percent), followed by French film property AlloCiné Sites (up 19 percent). Social networking site LinkedIn.com and daily deals site Groupon also ranked amongst the fastest growing properties, exhibiting a 6-percent month-on-month increase and a 4-percent increase, respectively.

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* Amongst the Top 100 online properties

European Internet Usage by Country

Below is a snapshot of European internet usage in the 18 reportable markets for which comScore provides individual reporting. The Russian Internet audience continued to grow and surpass Germany as the largest online market in Europe. The UK continued to show the highest engagement, with users spending an average of 38.2 hours online during the month.

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Source: www.comscore.com/companyinfo

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