What's Really Happening Online

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There was some fascinating data and statistics released on Tuesday from Nielsen Online according to the Marketing Charts news item, Average American Surfed 2,554 Pages in March, on the Internet habits and usage of Americans.

Here’s a breakdown of what’s really happening online:

  • The average American visited 111 internet domains in March 2009.
  • They surfed an average of 2,554 web pages in that one month.
  • The duration of time spent on a web page was about 56 seconds.
  • The top three parent companies (divisions) for the month were Google, Microsoft and Yahoo.
  • More than 137 million users visited at least one Google-owned site (or launched a Google application).
  • AOL was the 4th largest, but had the longest amount of time spent per person (3 hours and 45 minutes).
  • Facebook users spent an average of 3 hours and 16 minutes on the site during the month of March.

With Google announcing their numbers today and these statistics, it looks like the overall health of the online channel continues to grow, morph and develop.

Do you find it weird that some companies still question the audience and strength of the online channel?


  1. From a “company” perspective, it does seem weird; its hard to imagine an entire company being so dated and behind the times. However, if you dig a layer deeper and look at some older executives, who despite what their marketing handbook told them about assuming their customers hold identical values as they do – think that everyone else relies on the internet as much (read: as little) as they do… It seems much more realistic.
    As we, the tweeting digging friending leading edge take a step back – we should take the same dose of reality. Not everyone is the same as us. These older executives represent some of our target demographics as well. The online channel is strong and getting stronger, but it is still in its infancy for a large segment of the population (a segment that controls a lot of dollars).

  2. Do I find it weird that some companies are still not in gear? Yeah Mitch.
    Maybe if mainstream news media hadn’t been so protectionist over the years and actually shared honestly and in a timely manner the worth of an online presence companies would take it more seriously . . . and newspapers wouldn’t be going bankrupt at such alarming rates.
    What goes around comes around.
    Thanks for posting the stats.

  3. My feeling is there is a big lack of understanding what is going on in the web and social media space. I think it is a dangerous thing to assume that age has anything to do with “buy-in” for this medium, but it is rather a state of mind. If you understand how to leverage online promotions, web, social media, webinars, video, etc. to help enhance your branding, and to fill your sales pipeline, and you have built web analytics metrics to support your efforts (KPI’s), then you will have a clear picture as to which direction to go in. Then you can measure the outcome, retool and measure again. There is a big divide between people who get it and people who just don’t understand. Those of us that do get it, do not understand why business professionals, who are successful, do not. Conversely, there are many business professionals that do not understand what is happening and the rate at which it is happening. How many of us have had conversations with people and you try to explain the benefits of social media, Twitter, Linked-in, Blogs, Second Life etc? Instead of positive back and forth banter about how to maximize the value added potentials these tools offer, you get reactions that are less than enthusiastic. Instead, people react with a sarcastic humour and laugh at the names like Tweeting etc. Somehow, we have to ignore this, explain and demonstrate how important online media is to survival, to business development, to the future of most businesses. Thanks for the great conversation starter Mitch.

  4. Let’s ignore your silly, mind-numbing almost provincial media question here. The stats for Microsoft and AOL likely have more to do with default settings on a Windows-based computer or laptop and AOL’s portal as an internet service provider than they do with anyone’s conscious decision to visit those sights. It reminds me of the 90s, when you’d buy a Windows-based computer and it would come with AOL CD. You’d pop it in and pow! You’re hooked. The Google and Facebook numbers are more significant because, for the most part, people have to make a decision to go there.

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