January 2, 2007, 12:00 AM

Google and Microsoft do battle in the U.K., but retailers get biggest gains

Google and Microsoft stayed at the top of November’s comScore traffic rankings for the U.K. But the biggest gainers in traffic from the previous month were retail sites.

Bill Briggs

Senior Editor

Google Inc. and Microsoft Corp. stayed at the top of November’s comScore traffic rankings for the U.K. But the biggest gainers in traffic from the previous month were retail sites. Consistently among the top most-visited sites in the United States, it comes as little surprise that Microsoft sites, Google and eBay also rank at the top of the most-visited sites in the United Kingdom, according to comScore Networks.

ComScore found that of the web destinations most visited by U.K. residents aged 15 years and older during the month of November, Microsoft sites drew the most traffic, registering 29,298,000 unique visitors, which represented no statistically significant difference from its traffic the previous month. Google drew 24,976,000 unique visitors during the month, up 1% from the previous month, while eBay at 20,686,000 million visitors was up 4%.

“Clearly, Google and Microsoft are locked in a battle to be the most visited site in the U.K. As expected, due to the holiday shopping season, the sites posting the strongest gains vs. last month were predominantly online retailers, with GUS leading the pack, up 24% from October to November,” says Bob Ivins, managing director of comScore Europe. GUS-an abbreviation for retailer Great Universal Stores-ranked 11th in November’s traffic rankings.

Among those in the top 10 most-visited online destinations were Yahoo, at 19,862,000 visitors, up 2% from October; BBC sites, at 16,386,000 visitors, level with the previous month; and Amazon, up 10% at 13,648,000 visitors. Also in the top 10 most-visited sites in November were the sites of Time Warner Networks at 12,977,000 visitors and Ask Network at 11,790,000 visitors: both figures represented traffic level with the previous month. Rounding out the top 10 were the sites of Fox Interactive Media at 10,005,000 visitors and Wikipedia with 9,297,000 visitors. Both sites were up 8% from the previous month.

The measured traffic covering consumer visits to the sites from both home and work locations excluded traffic from computers at public locations such as Internet cafes, and those accessing the sites from mobile devices.

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