Posted by PBS Publicity on

Traffic Highs for Both PBS.org and PBSKIDS.org Cap a Record-Setting Year

Arlington, VA; Jan. 7, 2009 - PBS.org surged significantly ahead of the six leading commercial broadcast network Web sites in 2008, according to newly released data from Internet measurement service Hitwise. Using Hitwise's weekly traffic data from the entire year, PBS.org received a larger percentage share of U.S. visits more often than any commercial broadcast network Web site, ranking #1 amongst those sites for 19 weeks in 2008, with the CBS and NBC sites ranking first for 12 weeks (details below*).

The Hitwise weekly data also show PBS.org was either in first or second place among the broadcast network sites for 35 weeks in 2008 - more than half the year - and 11 weeks ahead of NBC, the closest commercial network.

In addition, PBS.org and PBSKIDS.org broke a number of their all-time traffic records in 2008:

  • PBS.org (www.pbs.org) set a single-day traffic record on September 22, with more than two million visits (Source: Google Analytics). During the 2007-2008 TV season, PBS.org's market share of visits among the six broadcast networks increased 25 percent over the previous season. (Source: Hitwise)
  • The new PBS KIDS GO! video player (pbskids.org/go/video/) is streaming nearly one million video clips a week, and has generated more than 13 million video streams since its soft launch last fall. The new player features advertising-free, streaming video, including hundreds of video clips and dozens of full-length episodes of favorite PBS children's programs. (Source: thePlatform)
  • PBS.org received more than 20 million unique visitors in October, setting a new monthly traffic record. (Source: Google Analytics)
  • PBSKIDS.org also broke new monthly traffic records, consecutively, in September, October, and November. In November, PBSKIDS.org had more than nine million visitors (Source: Google Analytics). According to Hitwise, PBSKIDS.org surpassed Disney Online and Nickelodeon in share of visits to children's sites in October.
  • PBS's YouTube channel (youtube.com/pbs) has recorded more than 14 million video views, while traffic coming to pbs.org from YouTube has increased more than 190 percent since last year.

The dramatic 2008 increases in traffic to PBS.org, which was already one of the most trafficked dot org sites on the Web, indicate that PBS is serving not only larger audiences than ever online, but younger audiences as well. Forty-six percent of the PBS.org audience is under 35.
(Source:Comscore MediaMetrix, November 2008.)

"We're incredibly proud of the remarkable growth PBS Interactive has achieved, leveraging the investment that PBS and our local stations have made in this area," said Paula Kerger, PBS' President and CEO.

John Boland, PBS' Chief Content Officer, added, "As the media environment is rapidly transforming, this news about PBS.org and PBSKIDS.org in 2008 shows that PBS and our local stations are not only remaining nimble, but also relevant and significantly valuable to audiences - where, when and, importantly, how they want it."

Jason Seiken, Senior Vice President, PBS Interactive, said the traffic gains were driven by search engine optimization and the launch of new products.

"Last year was just the beginning of our major drive to attract new audiences," Seiken said. "Starting in early 2009, we'll launch a series of exciting initiatives, including a complete redesign of pbs.org, a new video player with full episodes from across our programming universe, as well as major product launches on pbskids.org and pbsparents.org."

* 2008 Weekly Traffic Data From Hitwise


Weeks at #1
Weeks at #2
Weeks at #3
Weeks at #4

* Source: The rankings are based on the market share of U.S. visits, not viewing, among a custom category of commercial broadcast networks websites (ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, The CW and MyNetwork) and PBS for 52 weeks of 2008 (Sunday - Saturday) from the Hitwise sample of 10 million U.S. Internet users. Includes traffic aggregated from standalone websites americanidol.com, amw.com, familyguy.com, cops.com, thelot.com and thesimpsons.com.

About PBS
PBS, with its 356 member stations, offers all Americans - from every walk of life - the opportunity to explore new ideas and new worlds through television and online content. Each month, PBS reaches more than 115 million people on-air and online, inviting them to experience the worlds of science, history, nature and public affairs; hear diverse viewpoints; and take front row seats to world-class drama and performances. PBS' broad array of programs has been consistently honored by the industry's most coveted award competitions. Teachers of children from pre-K through 12th grade turn to PBS for digital content and services that help bring classroom lessons to life. PBS' premier children's TV programming and Web site, pbskids.org, are parents' and teachers' most trusted partners in inspiring and nurturing curiosity and love of learning in children. More information about PBS is available at www.pbs.org, one of the leading dot-org Web sites on the Internet.



CONTACT: Kevin Dando, PBS, 703-739-5073, kdando@pbs.org