Can Your Site Afford To Shrug Off $56M Per Year?

by Shawn Smith on September 18, 2008

http://www.flickr.com/photos/tyrian123/2770523323/
photo by JoshBerglund19

I once wrote that your news website can win the online election coverage race through aggregation. But I want you to forget focusing on web election coverage.

Because aggregation can help you win the whole online game altogether, judging by some Nielsen Online data.

Scott Karp analyzes the data that shows DrudgeReport.com has the highest reader engagement of Nielsen Online’s top 30 news sites during May 2008.

That’s right. DrudgeReport.com tops the NYTimes.com, CNN.com and Yahoo! News.

So why should you care about the DrudgeReport.com?

Because this site is built entirely on linking people to news stories on other sites. And they do so to the tune of about $56 million in annual revenue, according to Karp’s analysis of DrudgeReport.com’s media kit.

Page view statistics
500 million page views monthly
1.95 billion ad impressions monthly
12 million unique visitors monthly
1.75 million daily unique visitors (weekday)
1 million daily unique visitors (weekend day)

Assuming 60% sell-through at $4 CPM… that’s $56 million annual revenue.

Can You Afford To Ignore Linking?

Despite being the site that links out most and rarely, if ever, generates its own stories, DrudgeReport.com has an incredible rate of return visitors and high traffic. People come to DrudgeReport.com because they know the site will direct them to the interesting news they care about.

Wouldn’t it make sense that a local news website could replicate the same thing?

Instead of ignoring local bloggers or competitor’s websites, linking to others will help establish your site among readers as the place to go to get THE NEWS – not just news that your site produces, but all relevant stories that people need to know and are talking about.

On the web, it doesn’t always matter if you are the one producing the content, so long as you are getting the story to your readers and they know to come to you for the information they need.

What do you think?

Photo by JoshBerglund19