United Kingdom Newsletter - August, 2010

Specific to this issue:

  • Feature Article
    Facebook accounts for 1 in 6 UK page views, but is it reaching saturation point?
  • Fast Mover
    Clearance Auctions @ Comet - www.clearance-comet.co.uk
  • News In Brief
    1 in every 100 UK Internet searches Sky Sports related
  • Promotions
    New research report: how to drive more value from email, SMS and social media
Feature Article

Facebook accounts for 1 in 6 UK page views, but is it reaching saturation point?

Facebook is the second most visited website in the UK: in June it accounted for 7.14% of all UK Internet visits and over half (54.48%) of all visits to a social networking websites. In terms of total visits it continues to trail Google UK (9.59% market share in June) and, as previously highlighted, will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. However, using the measure of total page views rather than visits, Facebook is way ahead. The social network accounted for 16.73% of UK page views during June. In other words: 1 in every 6 Internet pages viewed in the UK was a Facebook page.

Facebook continues to grow around the world (during July 2010 it reached half a billion registered users) and there is no doubt that it leads the social networking pack in the UK. However, with 26m British users already, when will it start to reach saturation point? Facebook's market share of UK page views has trebled over the last five years, but growth has slowed significantly over the last six months. During July 2010 there was a slight decline in share, but this may well be down to seasonality (the August / September back to school / college / university period is significant for Facebook).

Another metric is average time spent on the site, a key metric for user engagement on social networks. Facebook has a very high average session time (almost half an hour) but, this has also stabilised over the last six months after increasing rapidly during the site's ascendency. Clearly Facebook is not losing traffic in the UK, but do these stats point to a stabilisation? The rapid period of the site's growth is now probably over in the UK, but does that mean Facebook has reached saturation point?

Fast Movers

Clearance Auctions @ Comet - www.clearance-comet.co.uk

Position for June 2010 - #4,815
Position for July 2010 - #2,236
Positions jumped - 2,579

UK Internet traffic to www.clearance-comet.co.uk, Comet's online auction site, has increased 2-fold from June to July this year. Moving up the ranks 2579 positions to #2,236 amongst all websites during July, the majority of traffic to Comet Auctions came from Google UK (35.8%) followed by Moneysavingexpert.com (8.7%), eBay UK (5.0%) and Comet (4.3%). The top non-branded search terms sending traffic to the site for the same period were, 'built in ovens electric' (0.24%), 'auctions' (0.21%) and 'american style fridge freezers' (0.17%). Notably 99% of the online auction site's traffic comes from organic search.

News In Brief

1 in every 100 UK Internet searches Sky Sports related

With the first Barclays Premier League matches taking place during the weekend of August 14 and 15th, the football season is now truly underway. As you would expect, UK Internet visits to key football related websites increased significantly during the week ending 15/08/2010: the Official Fantasy Premier League site by 186%, Sky Sports by 15%. There was also a 12% increase in traffic to BBC Sport, but it has yet to reach the same level of traffic it experienced during the World Cup.

All of the three sites mentioned above ranked amongst the top 100 most visited in the UK for the w/e 15/08/2010, with BBC Sport in 13th position and Sky Sports at number 15. Joining them in the top 100, in 70th position, was the Sky Digital TV Shop, the place where people go to either purchase Sky TV or upgrade their packages. The site is most popular in the North East, although Walsall is the individual postal area that currently most over-indexes in terms of traffic. This perhaps reflects the fact that there are four teams from West Midlands (Aston Villa, West Brom, Birmingham City, Wolves) competing in the top flight of English football this season - the first time this has happened for 27 years.

The main driver for all this traffic was clearly the demand for the Sky Sports channels, and searches for the terms 'sky sports' and 'sky sports football' increased by 38% and 22% respectively over the same period. These were the two most popular of 3,700 different ways in which people searched for the channels during the week ending 15/08/2010. Aggregating all of these together using Hitwise's new broad matching tool, shows that all of these variations accounted for 1% of all UK searches during this period - i.e. 1 in every 100 searches in the UK was related to Sky Sports.


New research report: how to drive more value from email, SMS and social media

The latest Experian CheetahMail research, based on a YouGov poll of nearly 6,500 European consumers, looks at the types of marketing communications that resonate through email, SMS and social media. The findings illustrate the huge potential value that can be realised if a company succeeds in finding the optimum digital marketing blend.

Download this whitepaper to hear how organisations such as ITV and Ultralase are using email, mobile and social media to drive customer engagement and improve ROI.

Webinar: How retail seasonal peaks impact your business
Friday, September 10, 2010 at 12:00pm (GMT)

In the build up to Christmas, it's not just online retail which benefits - travel, news and media and entertainment websites all see a significant boost. Learn how understanding seasonal peaks can help you maximise your online promotions.

Register for this webinar.

Media queries at Hitwise

If you are interested in using Hitwise content and statistics in publications and presentations, we encourage you to do so. Please source the content as "Hitwise United Kingdom - www.hitwise.com/uk".

Additionally, if you require assistance with statistics or content, please feel free to contact our marketing team at newsletter.uk@hitwise.com.

About this Newsletter

This monthly e-mail Newsletter is designed to provide Hitwise subscribers with analysis of new developments, industry trends and competitive activity. The powerful real-time web intelligence capabilities of Hitwise and a continual flow of additional research findings make this an indispensable business resource.