The State of Social Media
Category Displays Robust 35 Percent Growth versus Year Ago Amidst Uncertainty in the U.S. Economy
RESTON, VA, July 9, 2008 – Comscore, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCOR), a leader in measuring the digital world, today released an overview of activity at the financial news & research site category, which attracted more than 64 million U.S. visitors in May, an increase of 35 percent versus year ago.
“Current economic conditions – including rising gas prices, general inflation concerns, housing troubles and stock market uncertainty – have Americans seeking to stay informed about the factors influencing their personal finances,” said Jack Flanagan, Comscore executive vice president. “As a result, the financial news and research category has grown substantially during the past year, with strong visitor gains occurring at most sites, including above average gains at category leaders Yahoo! Finance and AOL Money & Finance.”
Yahoo! Finance led the category in May with 18.5 million visitors, up 58 percent versus year ago, followed by AOL Money & Finance with 15.2 million visitors (up 48 percent) and MSN Money with 13.7 million visitors (up 13 percent). CNET-owned business site BNET, which ranked seventh in the category with 5.6 million visitors, grew more than 3,000 percent versus last year due to the acquisition of FindArticles.com, while eighth-ranked TheStreet.com Sites tripled to 5.3 million visitors, also due in part to site acquisitions.
Category Growth Varies by Demographic
Though the category displayed visitor growth across virtually all demographic segments, certain segments contributed more than others. The number of visitors to the category age 50 and older grew 46 percent versus year ago, while visitors under 50 grew by 32 percent. Above average growth was also seen in the following segments: households earning at least $60,000 annually (40 percent), households with children (38 percent) and households with at least 5 people (57 percent). In sum, segments displaying the greatest growth paint a picture of those likely to have more financial responsibilities or challenges, such as needing to save for college and/or retirement, or needing to determine how best to handle more immediate financial obligations, such as home mortgage holders facing rapidly escalating monthly payments.
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