The average time users spent per visit fell on 17 of the 30 most-popular newspaper websites fell during May 2009 compared with May 2008, according to Nielsen. Below, we chart this decline for four of the top most-trafficked sites.
Less engagement doesn’t necessarily mean a news site is getting less traffic. In fact, some speculate that these numbers indicate newspapers are actually doing a much better job attracting visitors from short-attention-spanned search engine users.
Here’s the problem: In order to charge brand advertisers expensive rates, newspapers need to show that readers stick around for a while. Not happening.
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