Shareaholic reports referral traffic on social media both up and down

Shareaholic released a report that covers referral traffic data from the eight largest social media sites. This report covers the fourth quarter of 2013 (September-December). Some social platforms were up, others were down. The list of who gained and who lost is a virtual who’s who of growing versus dipping platforms.

Shareaholic’s numbers are tracking 250 million users on its network of 200,000 publishers. It’s a not-inconsiderable metric of what’s happening in the social media publishing world at large. Metrics are measured as an overall share of the visits being measured, so are proportional to the 100 percentage total.

Facebook saw the biggest gains, jumping about 49 percent over its rivals. Pinterest was just behind that at a 30 percent gain. StumbleUpon jumped 54 percent and Google+ about 19 percent.

Gains are not the total story, however. Popularity of the platform is also a very important measurement. Facebook held 10-17 percent of the overall sharing traffic gains (depending on the month of the quarter) and Pinterest held between 3 and 5 percent. Twitter held about one percent on average (0.99-1.17%) while all others held less than one percent of the traffic.

These are still measuring gains and losses, however, not actual traffic use. For that, Stumbleupon shows that the top three big dogs (Facebook, Twitter, Google+) are responsible for the vast majority of sharing, but of those three, only Facebook shows significant growth as a sharing site. Pinterest is very notable for its fast growth as well, and may displace Twitter given time.

It should also be noted that several platforms are losing ground at a fast clip here. YouTube dropped by 35 percent and LinkedIn by 27 percent while the ever-popular Reddit slumped 18 percent.

For marketers, what Shareaholic is showing here is worth delving into. You can read the whole report here.

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