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Telegraph.co.uk gets 8% of its traffic from social sites

May 10, 2009 23 Comments

Telegraph.co.uk gets an astonishing 8% of its visitors from social sites like Digg, Delicious, Reddit and Stumbleupon, Julian Sambles, Head of Audience Development, has revealed to me.

The figure's much higher than anyone previously thought - and helps explain how the Telegraph is now the most popular UK newspaper site.

Almost 75,000 unique visitors a day

Telegraph's Digg widget

Telegraph's Digg widget

The Telegraph got about 28 million unique visitors in March, which means social sites are sending it almost 75,000 unique visitors a day.

Julian gave me the figure in response to some questions for an article I wrote for Fumsi about social news and bookmarking sites.

He also told me that search engines are responsible for about a third of the Telegraph's traffic he also revealed - or about 300,000 unique visitors a day.

Telegraph's engagement with social sites

The 8% figure shows:

Driving traffic to 500 articles a day

"We at the Telegraph publish approx 500 articles every day covering a wide range of subjects and topics from breaking news events through to film and hotel reviews," Julian told me.

"All of these articles can be found by coming to our site but relying on this alone will limit the size of our audience. By working on how this content can be distributed and found in the digital world we can (and have) greatly increased the audience that reads our rich content.

Telegraph's football Twitter stream

Telegraph's football Twitter stream

The Telegraph's approach

"Social websites such as Digg, Reddit, and Fark allow members to choose and identify stories that they like.

"What we have done is to enable all of our stories to be submitted to these social sites by adding a 'share this' button on every article.

"In each case they can then add their own headline and comments onto the article so enabling their point of view to get across.

"By continuing to deliver a large volume of good, rich content we have found that our readers enjoy engaging with it."

Two recent examples he gave from Digg were:

Continued engagement

He went on to say that "We have successfully engaged with these social sites and will continue to incorporate tools and services that allow readers to interact and engage with our content when we make changes to our site.

"As with SEO, social media functionality and tools are a consideration in the design and build of our site and we encourage our readers to interact with our content.

"We are open at the Telegraph and try to communicate with the social networks directly and work with them on developing products and services that will help and engage with their members. An example of this is the implementation of the digg widget in the How About That section of our website.

"In the changing role of newspapers in the digital world it is important that we have the ability to adapt and engage with new services and social media to ensure that our great content reaches as many people who are interested in reading it."

Thanks to Julian

A massive thanks to Julian for taking the time to answer my questions, and giving such an interesting insight into the Telegraph's successful traffic driving plans. I've pretty much reproduced everything he emailed me here!

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