Online news sites get 80% of their readers from two sources: Facebook and Google

On Wednesday, Facebook caused quite a stir among journalists and news companies when it acknowledged that it was changing the mix of material Facebook users would see in their News Feeds. The company said it was going more back toward its roots, favouring updates from friends and families, and showing less news.

This chart from Statista shows why this is such a big deal. Facebook is now the number-one source of referrals to news sites, according to January-February 2016 data from, a digital media analytics provider. Google is right behind it, and the two of them together provide almost 80% of all traffic to news sites. If you broaden the categories beyond specific brands, 86% of traffic comes from social (including sources like Twitter) and search (Google, Bing, Yahoo, and others).

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