Almost 83 million US consumers visited education sites in September 2011, up 12% month-over-month, making education the second fastest growing category, according to [download page] comScore Media Metrix data. Total US internet audience increased about 1% during the time period, from 216 million to 218.5 million.
Pearson Education ranked as the leader of the education category with 22.3 million visitors (up 43%), while HotChalk attracted 17.2 million visitors (up 27%), earning both a spot on the top-gaining properties list. About.com Education drew 9.5 million visitors (up 49%), followed by ClassesUSA.com with 6.4 million and Coolmath.com Inc with 5.5 million (up 47%). The fastest-growing properties list excludes entities whose growth was primarily due to tagging through unified digital audience measurement.
Online gambling took the #1 spot on the top-growing categories list with almost 10 million people visitors during the month, up 13% overall. PokerStars was the category leader with 1.1 million visitors (up 11%), followed by UPickEm.net with 993,000 (up 36%), FullTiltPoker with 753,000, SimSlots, Inc. with 655,000 (up 5%) and Wooga.com with 520,000 (up 85%).
Interest in political news shared the #2 spot with education on the fastest growing categories list, drawing more than 35 million visitors, up 12%, with HuffPost Politics earning the top ranking with 9.9 million visitors (up 8%). CNN Politics came in second with 8.1 million visitors (up a healthy 11%), while Politico.com ranked third with 4.8 million visitors (up 8%). Rounding out the top five were RealClearPolitics.com, which spiked 15% to 2.5 million visitors, and The Economist Group, up 4% to 2.5 million. Meanwhile, BarackObama.com followed not far behind with 1.6 million visitors.
Google sites ranked as the #1 property in September with 184.6 million visitors, up more than 1 percent from June figures. Microsoft Sites continued to gain ground on Yahoo Sites, remaining in the #3 spot with 176.9 million visitors but right behind Yahoo’s 177.1 million. ESPN, Technorati Media and NBC Universal each jumped four positions, to rank at #20, #26 and #41, respectively. NFL Internet Group appeared in the top 50 ranking for the first time at #40 (28.2 million visitors).
Google Ad Network led the September Ad Focus ranking with a reach of 92.8% of Americans online, unchanged from its leading reach in June (see link above), followed by Yahoo Network Plus (86.1%) and AOL Advertising (84.8%). AdWorks maintained its position at #4 with an 82.6% reach, while ValueClick Networks rounded out the top five at 81.6%.
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