When the Olympics Happened, the World Turned to Yahoo!, the No. 1 Online Destination for Winter Olympics Coverage

Yahoo! Sports Takes Gold, Beating NBCOlympics.com, ESPN and All Other Sites in Number of Unique Visitors and Time Spent

— Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) today released comScore audience figures showing that Yahoo! Sports was the No. 1 online destination in the US for Olympics coverage, beating out NBC and ESPN as the destination people turn to for the most relevant, timely, and comprehensive information about major sporting events.

According to comScore, Yahoo!’s site dedicated to Olympics coverage (sports.yahoo.com/olympics/) attracted 32 million unique visitors from February 12 to 28, signifying the largest online audience for the 2010 Winter Olympics. Yahoo!’s site for Olympics coverage surpassed NBCOlympics.com and ESPN which both counted 19 million unique visitors each, during the same period. Yahoo! Sports received more than 40 million total unique visitors during the Winter Olympics, breaking the monthly record in the online sports category and exceeding its closest competitor by more than 19 million unique visitors. Additionally, visitors to Yahoo!’s site covering the Olympics spent 314 million total minutes on the site, compared to the 218 million total minutes spent by visitors to NBC’s Olympics site.

“The 2010 Winter Olympics featured exciting competition, brilliant performances, spectacular blunders, compelling human interest stories and once again the world turned to Yahoo! for the most comprehensive and engaging coverage of the games,” said Jimmy Pitaro, vice president, Yahoo! Media. “We know what users want when they come to Yahoo!, and we delivered a cross-platform Winter Games experience that helped us turn in our own gold medal performance: record traffic, engagement and click-through rates.”

Yahoo!’s Searches During the Games

Audiences consistently looked to Yahoo! for up-to-the competition results, the most interesting stories and for answers to a wide range of questions about all aspects of the games. Below is a sampling of search highlights:

  • Most searched athlete: Lindsey Vonn was the top searched athlete of the 2010 Winter Games.
  • Most searched Olympic sport: Curling climbed the ranks to become the top searched sport/event by a wide margin.
  • Most random searches: Searches for esoteric trivia such as “how heavy is a curling stone” and “why does Apolo Ohno yawn” were extremely popular.
  • Top mobile searches: Julia Mancuso and her reported “feud” with fellow USA skier Lindsey Vonn caught people’s attention: Searches soared 97% during the first week of competition, ultimately landing the silver medalist among the most searched Olympic athletes on mobile. The dating habits of athletes were also a hot topic, with many searchers looking for information on the personal lives of Evan Lysacek, Shaun White, Apolo Ohno, and Bode Miller.

Most Clicked Stories

Once again, Yahoo!’s editors featured fascinating stories on the Yahoo! homepage from its industry-leading team of writers that really clicked with Olympic fans, including:

  • A story about a private pre-race conversation between Shaun White and his coach that was accidentally broadcast became the most popular story on the Yahoo! homepage during the Winter Games.
  • The second most popular story focused on the controversy over the Canadian women’s hockey team’s gold medal victory celebration.
  • A popular figure from the Summer Olympics rounded out our top three. Michael Phelps’ announcement that he would retire following the London Olympic Games was the third most popular feature.

Yahoo! Olympic Offerings During the Games

Yahoo! Sports’ coverage of the 2010 Winter Games had one of the largest editorial teams in Vancouver, led by Yahoo!’s award-winning writers Dan Wetzel, Charles Robinson, Martin Rogers, Jeff Passan and Greg Wyshynski. To give fans a multifaceted view and analysis of the competitions, Yahoo! Sports also lined up Olympians and champion athletes, including Sasha Cohen, Dominique Dawes, Tiki Barber, Elvis Stojko, Donna Weinbrecht, Ken Daneyko, Jessica Mendoza, Bryon Friedman, and Jennifer Jones, plus video hosts Charissa Thompson and Angela Sun.

Yahoo! Sports featured additional daily Olympics coverage with:

  • “Fourth-Place Medal,” a leading blog about the Olympics with keen insights from editor Chris Chase and Puck Daddy blog editor Greg Wyshynski. “Medal” vaulted into the top 20 of sports blog rankings after two weeks of activity.
  • Yahoo!’s mobile site covering the Olympics which let on-the-go fans keep up with the latest, including medal counts, news and expert coverage, live results, and athlete profiles.
  • Winter Games Roundup, a daily video news show hosted by Dawes that provided recaps of top stories along with information on upcoming events.

Yahoo! also built a custom-designed broadcast studio in Vancouver, and an entertainment center, FanCouver, where more than 100,000 fans attending the games visited to participate in Yahoo! events and promotions.

Yahoo! Sports is no stranger to domination when covering the Olympics. During the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, the site attracted the largest online audience for a sports destination, reaching more than 38.5 million people during the month of August 2008 and setting a then all-time audience high. Yahoo! Sports beat the closest competitor (NBC Sports) by a decisive 15 million unique visitors. During August 2008, one in five U.S. Internet users visited Yahoo! Sports, and Yahoo! News also set an all-time site record, reaching 44.3 million unique users. Combined, Yahoo! Sports and Yahoo! News reached 57.3 million users, nearly one-third of the entire Internet audience.

About Yahoo!

Yahoo! attracts hundreds of millions of users every month through its innovative technology and engaging content and services, making it one of the most visited Internet destinations and a world-class online media company. Yahoo!’s vision is to be the center of people’s online lives by delivering personally relevant, meaningful Internet experiences. Yahoo! is headquartered in Sunnyvale, California. For more information, visit pressroom.yahoo.com or the company’s blog, Yodel Anecdotal (yodel.yahoo.com).

Yahoo! is the trademark and/or registered trademark of Yahoo! Inc.

 

SOURCE: Yahoo! Inc.

 

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