Highly-anticipated matches show highest visitation in the final rounds.
BestMediaInfo Bureau | Delhi | April 14, 2011
Recently, comScore released data that showed online traffic in India experiencing a surge in the first few weeks of the 2011 Cricket World Cup. In the last few weeks of the World Cup, visitation to top cricket sites continued to see a sustained peak in traffic as the final matches brought the tournament to a close. In India, the March 30 semifinals match featuring India vs. Pakistan drew the largest online audience for an individual day, with nearly 3 million visitors coming to Yahoo! Cricket alone.
Traffic in the Knockout Rounds Sustains Increase in Volume:
Coming off the traffic spike brought about by the March 12 match featuring India vs. South Africa, cricket sites in India saw a sustained rate of visitation throughout the knockout tournament rounds, which began on the week of March 20.
Leading site ESPNCricInfo.com continued to attract the highest number of weekly visitors from India during these rounds, with 6.3 million visiting the site during the week of semifinals (week ending March 20). In the final week (week ending April 3), ESPNCricInfo.com reached 6.6 million visitors, up 8 percent versus 5 weeks prior.
Other top cricket sites experienced even more dramatic increases. Yahoo! Cricketâ€™s weekly visitation saw a 33-percent jump from 5 weeks ago, while CricBuzz.com gained 36 percent. ESPNStar.com saw a sizeable 75-percent increase to 4.3 million visitors, while CricTime.com saw the most dramatic percentage increase at 86 percent.
Highly-Anticipated Matches Show Highest Visitation in the Final Rounds:
An analysis of daily traffic coming from India during the knockout rounds shows the highest volume of visitors occurring on the days of highly-anticipated matches involving India. During the quarterfinal rounds, the March 24 Australia vs. India match drew 1.8 million visitors to ESPNCricInfo.com, 1.7 million visitors to Yahoo! Cricket, and 1.3 million visitors to ESPNStar.com.
The final match between India and Sri Lanka on April 2 also drew significant visitation for these sites, although the greatest volume of daily traffic occurred during the March 30 India vs. Pakistan semifinal match. With 1.8 million visitors, Yahoo! Cricket actually surpassed ESPNCricInfo.comâ€™s audience of 1.7 million visitors that day. ESPNStar.com, CricTime.com, and CricBuzz.com also drew their highest daily visitor totals on this day.
The surge in Internet traffic to cricket sites during the Cricket World Cup reflects not just how wildly popular the sport continues to be among participating countries, but also how digital technology supplements the traditionally TV-dominated coverage of this and other major sporting events. With the continued surge in Internet adoption in India, along with the proliferation of mobile devices, the Indian population has more options than ever to stay connected and current to the important events of the day.