Which social media platforms drive most traffic into websites?

Although I guess this is wide spread knowledge for most Social Media professional, I think it’s worth discussing some of the stats about Social Media related traffic on external web-sites from a different point of view (note: “external websites” in the context of this post are traditional non-social network sites).

Here is a graph from a recent Technorati post highlighting traffic driven from Social Networks to blogs:
The data, which is probably focused on the most important goal for marketers and website owners – driving traffic from social networks to their sites, shows that the mass of traffic is driven by Facebook and twitter. It’s very conclusive – Facebook and Twitter are by far the most effective platform to target, but there are two good questions to ask are: to what extent is this true for websites implementing social connectivity strategies? and is this traffic content related?

Moving forward, I assume that Google, Yahoo and most of the platform above, would do a very good job in prominently showing social activities on their platforms to promote content discovery and outbound clicks. everybody would have a “stream” – This is a must for those platform to survive in a world dominated today by Facebook and Twitter. If that actually happens, some of the marketers might find it more effective to promote user activities on other platforms, as they would offer a lower “price”. Assuming that each item shared by users has some “cost” associated with it (especially if it is an incentives share) an interesting data bit for marketers would be the the cost of a lead gained from sharing activities or advertising in all other platforms.

Here is some more data from Gigya (disclaimer – this data is not super up-to-date). Unlike the Technorati data, those stats are not blog focused:

Distribution of shared items
Facebook: 44%
Twitter: 29%
Yahoo:18%
MySpace:9%

There are far more companies providing identities with which users can sign-in to 3rd party websites, so that data looks different from sharing data, and also looks different by site type:

Share of Authentication By Platform:

News sites:
Facebook: 31%
Google: 30%
Yahoo: 25%
Twitter: 11%
AOL: 3%

This indicates that users actually share and authenticate using diverse Platforms, if they actually are given a chance to do so (depends on whether the website has implemented sharing and authentication to other destinations). The data actually drives right into the heart of Gigya’s value proposition – enable users to choose which destinations they want to connect and share to, and then track and optimize the conversion rate of share to traffic to realize which platforms are effective in driving traffic for your site.

I’m guessing some websites would experience that the distribution of users authenticating and sharing by platform varies according to the site’s content and target audience. If your website targets an older demographic user segment you may find that Yahoo and Linked-in are actually a favorite connectivity destination for your users, potentially leading to lower costs associated with acquiring leads from those platforms and making them an important part of your social marketing strategy.

4 thoughts on “Which social media platforms drive most traffic into websites?

  1. Rose O. Ross

    Very nicely introduced information. Although I try and focus now on Facebook and social targeted traffic every approach and tip it truly is useful on this environment. It’s acquiring more and more hard to generate site visitors to a new website so it really is often very good to find intriguing details about this, as you introduced. Thanks

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  2. Focusing On Targeted Website Traffic

    Far too many entrepreneurs waste their time promoting and advertising to anyone and everyone. You never know who is going to see an ad or what they will think upon arriving at your site. With targeted website traffic, the odds of making a sell are much higher. And the good news is it is actually rather easy to find targeted traffic online today.. Hmmm…

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