Press Releases

September 9, 2008

Online Health Information Category Grows At Rate Four Times Faster Than Total Internet

Category Up 21 Percent in Past Year

WebMD Health Ranks as Top Publisher of Display Ads

RESTON, VA, September 9, 2008 – comScore, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCOR), a leader in measuring the digital world, today released results of a study showing that the health information site category has grown 21 percent during the past year – more than four times the growth rate of the total U.S. Internet population.

While WebMD Health continues to lead the category with 17.3 million visitors in July (up 3 percent versus year ago), three other health networks boosted the overall growth of the category, each attracting more than ten million visitors: Everyday Health with 14.7 million (up 63 percent), Revolution Health Network with 11.3 million visitors (up 182 percent), and AOL Health with 11.1 million (up 88 percent). While Everyday Health and Revolution Health Network both achieved significant organic growth on their core Web sites, their recent partnerships with several smaller health sites, as well as some strategic acquisitions, have also contributed to their respective gains.

Top 10 Health Information Sites by Unique Visitors
July 2008 vs. July 2007
Total U.S. – Home/Work/University Locations
Source: comScore Media Metrix
  Total Unique Visitors (000)
Jul-2007 Jul-2008 % Change
Total Internet : Total Audience 180,078 189,134 5
Health – Information 56,865 69,008 21
WebMD Health 16,829 17,277 3
Everyday Health 9,009 14,703 63
Revolution Health Network 4,014 11,329 182
AOL Health* 5,913 11,095 88
About.com Health 6,947 8,682 25
Yahoo! Health 7,445 8,496 14
MSN Health 8,833 7,813 -12
NIH.GOV 8,545 7,315 -14
RIGHTHEALTH.COM 2,424 6,160 154
Quality Health Network N/A 5,822 N/A

*Due to the transition of AOL Body to AOL Health in June 2008, the July 2007 AOL figures reported in the above chart are for AOL Body while the July 2008 figures are for AOL Health.

“Improved site functionality, increased content personalization, and overall consumer acceptance of the Internet as a source for health information have helped to breathe new life into the health information category,” said John Mangano, senior director, comScore Pharmaceutical Marketing Solutions. “Most sites have become vibrant online communities rooted in sharing experiences and advice, rather than simply being one-way information resources for the consumer. As Google and Microsoft ramp up efforts with their respective health sites, Google Health and Microsoft HealthVault, it will be interesting to see how the category continues to evolve.”

WebMD Health Ranks as Top Display Ad Publisher

In June, more than 1.5 billion display ad views were seen by nearly 54 million people via sites in the health information category. WebMD Health topped the list of display ad publishers, delivering 290 million display ad views and reaching nearly 15 million people at an average frequency of 19.3 times per visitor during the month. Revolution Health Network and AOL Health ranked second and third, with 201 million display ad views and 186 million display ad views, respectively. While the number of unique visitors exposed to advertising at both Revolution Health Network and AOL Health were significantly lower than for WebMD Health, they were reached with a higher frequency.

Also noteworthy is that despite Weight Watchers International delivering ads to just 2 million unique visitors, each ad-exposed visitor saw an average of 31 display ads during the month, the highest frequency among the top ten publisher sites in the category.

Top 10 Health Information Publishers By Total Ad Views*
June 2008
Total U.S. – Home/Work/University Locations
Source: comScore Ad Metrix
Publisher Total Display Ad Views (MM) Share of Display Ad Views Advertising Exposed Unique Visitors (000) Average Frequency
Health - Information 1,556 100.0% 53,556 29.0
WebMD Health 290 18.6% 14,992 19.3
Revolution Health Network 201 12.9% 8,320 24.1
AOL Health 186 12.0% 8,780 21.2
Everyday Health 154 9.9% 10,355 14.8
MSN Health 109 7.0% 7,751 14.1
About.com Health 98 6.3% 7,242 13.5
LIFESCRIPT.COM 92 5.9% 3,406 27.0
Weight Watchers International 61 3.9% 1,962 31.0
Yahoo! Health 59 3.8% 7,902 7.5
AARP Sites 34 2.2% 1,696 20.3

* Excludes house ads and very small ads.

About comScore
comScore, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCOR) is a global leader in measuring the digital world and preferred source of digital marketing intelligence. For more information, please visit www.comscore.com/boilerplate.

Tags: Health, Rankings