Who’s Driving the Most Traffic To News Sites?

The study says on the average 40% of news traffic comes to top news sites from outside referrals. The omnipresent search engine was the lead referring site for 17 major news sites reported in the study and ranked second referring site for the other four.

No surprises here, Google scores high as the biggest single driver of traffic to top news sites with both Google Search and Google News, according to Journalizm.com.

I use Google when I am searching for information regarding news or topics, and have never thought otherwise. Looks like I’m not the only one.

The study says on the average 40% of news traffic comes to top news sites from outside referrals. The omnipresent search engine was the lead referring site for 17 major news sites reported in the study and ranked second referring site for the other four.

Interestingly, according to the study most of the referrals stem from topic or news event-related searches like “Japan Tsunami” or “NCAA champion, men’s.” Users, who type in the name of a specific site or information source, go to Google for the find.

Journalism.com reports that Google’s influence varies by the quality of the site. When searching for news within legacy news sites with established prominent brands in their own right, Google was a less significant source as a search engine. At this level, Google represented an average of 28.4% of the traffic per site.

Yahoo tries to compete with Google through its own search engine, drawing merely 2.7% of its traffic from its competitor. And it works the same way for Google which got less than 1% of its traffic from Yahoo’s search engine.

I sometimes wonder who has the most power over the Internet. Is it the search engines or the social networking platforms? If it’s the search engines, which drives all the readers to one’s site, then Google rules the Internet.