In February, CBS.com ranked third in Hitwise’s ranking of network web sites. But in March and April, it placed first, ahead of NBC, ABC, Hulu, Fox and AmericanIdol.com. What happened?
Britney Spears happened — two times. CBS.com has been dining out on the clips from Spears’ two guest appearances on “How I Met Your Mother,” in March and again on Monday. We assume Les Moonves is busy signing Britney to a deal that will ensure cameos on “Criminal Minds”, “Shark” and every iteration of “CSI”.
Alas, Britney hasn’t given CBS an undisputed lock on the top network website title. That’s because of the vagaries of Web measurement, which get even funkier when it comes to Web video. Hitwise ranks CBS.com first in terms of market share of visits among TV sites. But in March, both comScore and Nielsen said that ABC.com generated the most video views. Confused? Of course you are. Don’t worry: Advertisers — the folks that really count here — don’t know what to make of the competing stats, either.