Despite their vocal complaints, users may be falling for Facebook’s latest redesign. The social networking site jumped to the top of the list of big web brands in terms of average time spent per user last month, surpassing Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO) and AOL (NYSE: TWX) for the honors, Nielsen Online said in a note Monday.
On average, visitors spent four hours and thirty-nine minutes on Facebook in June, up substantially from the three hours and fourteen minutes they spent in May. People spent an average of three hours and fifteen minutes on second place Yahoo and two hours and forty three minutes on sites in AOL’s media network. Nielsen did not lay out reasons for the shift, although it could be a sign that people have become more engaged with Facebook since its redesign, which gave prominent play to a refreshing stream of status updates on users’ home pages. Total traffic to Facebook was also up, further widening the social network’s lead over MySpace-owner Fox Interactive Media.
(An aside: Along with growth, apparently, come many revisions to a company’s mission statement. The NY Observer points out that Facebook’s one sentence tagline—“Facebook’s mission is to give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected”—has changed nine times in the site’s four years of existence).
The Nielsen data:
June 2009 (in hours)
1. Facebook 4:39:33
2. Yahoo 3:15:59
3. AOL 2:43:10
4. Fox Interactive Media 2:14:21
5. MSN/Windows Live/Bing 2:02:11
May 2009 (in hours)
1. AOL 3:37:50
2. Yahoo 3:14:28
3. Facebook 3:12:13
4. MSN/Windows Live/Live Search 2:20:14
5. Google 1:17:04
By Joseph Tartakoff