Whatever happened to all those TV viewers that were going to shut off the tube and head to the Web? Despite at least one Hulu-only household, Web viewing hasn’t significantly cut into TV time. And traffic to TV network Web sites is barely budging.
ZenithOptimedia says the top 10 TV network sites added only 2.9% more unique visitors in January, which means they actually lost market share, because the total Internet population added 3.2% more users. On the flip side, the folks who do go make it network sites are hanging out longer: Time spent on the sites increased 16.8%.
NBC, CBS and the other networks are making an effort to distribute their stuff beyond their home sites, so these stats don’t tell the entire picture. But while we keep hearing that more and more people are happy to watch TV shows on the Internet, we haven’t seen convincing evidence that it’s happening.
The biggest loser among top sites was Turner’s (TWX) Cartoonnetwork.com, down 11.8% in unique visitors; the biggest winner, NationalGeographic.com, was up 53.8%.
The rest of the top-10 in January according to ZenithOptimedia:
Foodnetwork.com: 9.2m uniques +5.0%
NBC.com: 8.3m uniques +10.8%
NICK.com: 7.9m uniques +4.5%
HGTV.com: 7.9m uniques +6.6%
ABC.com: 7.6m uniques -3.1%
MTV.com: 7.1m uniques +5.4%
Discovery.com: 5.9m uniques -5.5%
Cartoonnetwork.com: 5.7m uniques -11.5%
CBS.com: 5.1m uniques +25.5%
NationalGeographic.com: 4.5m uniques +53.8%
Total: 47.1 million Jan. 2007 vs 48.5 million Jan. 2008
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