UK Internet users spend 240 million hours watching online videos every month

London – UK Internet users spend 240 million hours every month watching online video content, according to analysis from Experian Hitwise, the competitive intelligence experts. The findings come from its new report, “Online Video: Bringing Social Media to Life” which outlines the latest consumer trends in this sector and advice for digital marketers.

In September 2011, the UK Internet population made over 785 million visits to online video websites – an increase of 36 per cent year-on-year. The majority of growth in this space has been driven by YouTube, now the third most popular website in the UK after Google UK and Facebook. YouTube dominates with 70 per cent of all visits to online video sites. Every month, UK Internet users spend 184 million hours watching YouTube content, with an average session time of 20 minutes.

Ranking second and third are the video-on-demand (VOD) services from BBC iPlayer and ITV Player, which now represent a significant percentage of overall internet visits to video sites. Niche sites have also seen a huge increase in traffic, including videozer (+853 per cent), MSN Video (+913 per cent) and Hulu (+123 per cent).

James Murray, Marketing Research Analyst at Experian Hitwise, said:
“There are now more visits to video websites every month than to email providers, travel or sports sites, which represents a huge opportunity to the savvy marketer. The average Internet user will make 18 visits to video sites a month and almost half will visit at least three different sites. While YouTube dominates the market, the increase in traffic to video-on-demand and more niche sites demonstrates that content is what matters most to today’s Internet users and they’ll go to whatever site has the content they’re most interested in viewing”.

Music top driver of traffic to video sites

Music, TV, films and gaming are the top four search topics that drove consumers to video websites. Music is the biggest driver of traffic, accounting for 33 per cent of search clicks. The majority were looking for music videos, where Lady Gaga was the most searched for artist.

Seventeen per cent of search clicks to online content were for TV-related search terms; specifically EastEnders, Britain’s Got Talent, X-Factor and South Park, while gamers were looking for trailers for new games and walkthrough cheats.

Brands can capitalise on growing video trends

James Murray said:
“As people consume more video content online, brands should increasingly be looking to use video as a core part of their digital strategy. Online video is a very diverse media that can be used to build brand awareness, to bring traffic to a website, as an educational tool to demonstrate a product or service, as a customer service channel, or as a way to attract a completely new online audience”.

“Domino’s and British Airways are excellent examples of how brands can use YouTube as a customer service channel. Others, such as Yeo Valley, have created successful multi-channel advertising campaigns by repurposing TV adverts online, where the online advert had a potent effect in generating media awareness and enabled the company to reach a completely new audience”.



Alexandra Banks
Digital PR Manager, Experian Marketing Services
+44 (0) 7966102823

About Experian Hitwise

Experian Hitwise is the leading online competitive intelligence service. Experian Hitwise gives marketers a competitive advantage by providing daily insights on how 25 million Internet users around the world interact with more than 1 million websites. This external view helps companies grow and protect their businesses by identifying threats and opportunities as they develop. Experian Hitwise has more than 1,500 clients across numerous sectors, including financial services, media, travel and retail.

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