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Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Internet Trends: Election Impact

A thirst for election news drove increased traffic to news and election sites this week. Statistics from Nielsen/Netratings, comScore Networks and Google showed significant increases in election related traffic and queries.

comScore Networks reported significant increases for both and for both November 1st and Election Day, November 2nd. On November 1st, Bush led with 317,000 daily visitors (a 128 percent change vs. average of the previous four corresponding days) to Kerry's 306,000 visitors (a 103 percent spike). On November 2nd, that percentage flip-flopped. Kerry (online at least) actually beat Bush 480,000 to 382,000 (a 128 percent change vs. average of the previous four corresponding day to Bush's 101 percent change).

The most visited news site on Nov 2nd, as ranked by Comscore, was CNN with 5,607,000 visitors. This was an increase of 63 percent over November 1st traffic. Nielsen/NetRatings also ranked CNN in the lead, though with different numbers. The company reported a 110 percent increase in traffic for CNN from Nov 1 -- 2. CNN was also the top Google media query on November 2nd.

Google ranked FoxNews in second place for media queries on election day. The position was echoed by Comscore, which reported 1,811,000 visitors to on Nov. 2, a 73 percent change vs. the average of the previous four corresponding days. Nielsen/NetRatings ranked FoxNews third, at 1,179 visitors for November 2nd. In the Nielsen/Netratings numbers, MSNBC came in at number two in terms of election day traffic, with 2,770 (with a growth of 143 percent over November 1). Google reported MSNBC as its number three top media query for November 2nd.

Overall, AOL Elections was the winner in Nielsen/Netratings' statistics for percentage traffic growth (324 percent) from November 1 - 2. comScore's numbers showed DailyKos, the political blog, as having a 259 percent increase in traffic on election day as a percentage vs. the average four previous corresponding days. The Washington Post's site also posted impressive traffic on November 2nd, a 98 percent gain. The Drudge Report also scored well, with 978,000 visitors on November 2 according to comScore. According to Google, it was the number 9 media query, putting it ahead of queries for the Associated Press.

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