Nearly 22 million people per month visit websites related to Barack Obama, while John McCain-related sites generate about 3.5 million visitors, according to a report from AdGooroo that analyzes the candidates’ websites and search-engine marketing programs.
“Searching for the Next President: The Internet’s Impact on McCain vs. Obama” finds 57% more websites focused on the Obama campaign than on the McCain campaign. However, McCain receives 11% more traffic through independent (non-campaign-owned) websites.
- Excluding sites owned by the campaigns, there are more than 3.5 times as many Pro-Obama websites as Pro-McCain sites.
- In September, Obama ran 17 negative search-engine ads, while McCain ran only three.
- During the same period, the McCain campaign targeted 226 keywords, while the Obama campaign targeted 174.
- Obama’s keyword list heavily targets variations of candidates’ names, the McCain campaign targets keywords associated with a wide variety of issues, including abortion and affordable housing.
- Of the 170 sites identified as neutral – those that contain both positive and negative articles – 143 focused primarily on Obama; 27 focused primarily on McCain.
- Despite having a smaller internet presence, the McCain campaign is driving nearly 11% more traffic from independent websites than the Obama campaign.
- While both campaigns have about the same percentage of pro-candidate websites, McCain has a higher percentage of negative partisan websites directed against his campaign.
“In the most heated and important competition of the year, applying the right technology offers us a tremendous amount of insight into the candidates’ presence on the web and the relative boost each receives from their efforts to connect with voters online,” said AdGooroo founder and “Chief Gooroo” Rich Stokes.
About the research: The report quantifies the website activity, internet reach and search-engine-marketing keyword selection of both camps, based on data collected between September 1 and September 22, 2008