Exclusive: Top 30 Newspaper Sites for March

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By: Jennifer Saba

The Wall Street Journal online and the Web site of The Dallas Morning News made big gains in March with unique traffic. Both sites saw their traffic rise at least 90% compared to the same period a year ago. The data is the latest from Nielsen Online, which ranks for E&P the top 30 newspaper Web sites by monthly unique traffic.

The Plain Dealer in Cleveland and Village Voice Media also pulled in some impressive gains in monthly uniques, up 89% and 139% respectively.

Most newspaper sites advanced their traffic in March with about one-third of the group reporting declines. And some that did report drops in monthly traffic experienced only small dips. USAToday.com fell 2%. Boston.com (The Boston Globe) was down 1%. Azcentral.com (The Arizona Republic) fell 4%.

Newcomers to the list in March compared to February: MercuryNews.com, Orlando Sentinel, Sun-Sentinel, and Cleveland.com.

The Baltimore Sun and Washington Times dropped off the list in March.

Below is the complete custom list of the top 30 newspaper Web sites provided by Nielsen Online (owned by E&P’s parent company). The percent change compares March 2008 uniques with March 2007 uniques. Also keep in mind there are several reasons why traffic fluctuates, including news events.

Brand or Channel — Unique Audience (000) — % Change (YoY)

NYTimes.com — 18,869 –30%
USATODAY.com — 10,709 — (-2%)
washingtonpost.com — 8,929 — 13%
Wall Street Journal Online — 6,850 — 99%
LA Times — 5,729 — 22%

New York Post — 4,677 — 31%
Boston.com — 4,184 — (-1%)
Chicago Tribune — 3,825 — 31%
SFGate.com/San Francisco Chronicle — 3,793 — (-10%)
Daily News Online Edition — 3,314 — 54%

Newsday — 3,240 — 44%
Village Voice Media — 2,814 — 139%
DallasNews.com – The Dallas Morning News — 2,727 — 96%
The Houston Chronicle — 2,690 — (-26%)
International Herald Tribune — 2,587 — 33%

Atlanta Journal-Constitution — 2,384 — 28%
Chicago Sun-Times — 2,206 — 8%
The Politico — 2,095 — 58%
Azcentral.com — 2,016 — (-4%)
Seattle Post-Intelligencer — 1,967 — (-8%)

tampabay.com — 1,908 — 6%
Star Tribune — 1,763 — 18%
MercuryNews.com — 1,662 — 36%
Orlando Sentinel — 1,642 — (-31%)
Philly.com — 1,554 — (-12%)

Sun-Sentinel — 1,524 — (-9%)
Detroit Free Press — 1,484 — 38%
Cleveland.com — 1,460 — 89%
MiamiHerald.com — 1,451 — (-17%)
The San Diego Union-Tribune — 1,432 — (-19%)

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