January 15th, 2014
03:36 PM ET

2013: CNN Digital Posts Best Year Ever; Dominates Mobile

cnn-digital-badge-REDSets Records in Page Views & Video Starts, Tops Yahoo!-ABC News by 40% in Mobile

Serving up, across all platforms, an average of 2.4 billion total global page views per month and more than 150 million monthly video starts, CNN Digital posted in 2013 its best year in history.* While sites like Yahoo!-ABC News struggled, ultimately losing both page views and unique visitors year over year (YOY), CNN Network showed gains in both categories and maintained a 40% lead over its closest competitor in mobile.  In addition, CNN.com broke traffic records across the site, with eight out of 10 sections – US, World, Entertainment, Travel, Tech, Living, Health and Opinion, posting all-time monthly page view highs.**

*Source(s): Adobe Reports & Analytics, Jan – Dec 2013, for desktop. Adobe Reports & Analytics and Bango, Jan – Dec 2013, for mobile.

**Source: Adobe Reports & Analytics 2013; *Data for sections goes back to January 2010.

Unique Visitors (Desktop)

The CNN Network averaged 67 mm unique visitors per month in 2013, placing it behind only Yahoo!-ABC News Network.  However, CNN grew uniques by 9% over the previous year and Yahoo!-ABC dropped by 2%.

CNN Network (67 mm uniques)

  • 9% higher than HPMG News (62 mm)
  • 27% higher than NBC News Digital (53 mm)
  • 74% higher than USAToday Sites (39 mm)
  • 78% higher than CBS News (38 mm)
  • 102% higher than New York Times Digital (33 mm)
  • 117% higher than Fox News Digital Network (31 mm)

Page Views (Desktop) 

CNN Network averaged 1.9B monthly page views in 2013, placing it ahead of all competition except the combined Yahoo!-ABC News rollup, which posted a 47% decline YOY.  CNN Network grew average page views by 2% over 2012.

CNN Network (1.9B page views)

  • 34% higher than HPMG News (1.4B)
  • 92% higher than Fox News Digital Network (966 mm)
  • 95% higher than NBC News Digital (955 mm)
  • 162% higher than CBS News (709 mm)
  • 172% higher than USAToday Sites (682 mm)
  • 199% higher than New York Times Digital (622 mm)

Source: comScore Media Metrix, Jan – Dec ’13.


Scoring its highest audience ever, the CNN Digital Network on Mobile averaged 30 mm monthly unique visitors for 2013 to-date, growing 40% over last year.

CNN Digital Network (30 mm uniques)

  • 40% higher than Yahoo!-ABC News Websites (21 mm)
  • 56% higher than Fox News Digital Network (19 mm)
  • 172% higher than Google News (11 mm)
  • 176% higher than Huffington Post (11 mm)
  • 244% higher than New York Times (9 mm)
  • 311% higher than MSNBC News (7 mm)

Source: Nielsen Mobile MediaView, Jan – Nov ’13.

  • The CNN Apps have been downloaded 42 million times – 12 million occurred in 2013.  (Sources: iTunes Connect, Android Market, Barnes & Noble, Ovi Store, App Hub, Amazon, Windows Phone and Nokia)
  • An unprecedented record 40% of the site’s traffic came from mobile in 2013. (Source: Adobe Reports & Analytics and Bango, Jan – Nov ’13)


  • CNN is the number one news organization on Twitter, with 41 million followers across all branded accounts (@CNN with 11 million followers; @CNNbrk with 15 million).  (Source: Twitter API Dec 2013)
  • In 2013, CNN earned more social mentions for major breaking news events than any other organization and maintained its position as the most social news brand in the world. (Source: Sysomos 2013)  
  • CNN remains the number one news organization on Facebook with more than 18 million fans across its branded Facebook pages. (Source: Facebook API Dec 2013)
  • In 2013, CNN’s social referrals were up double digits (up 66%) compared to the previous year. (Source: Adobe Reports & Analytics 2013 vs. 2012)

2013’s “Tops”  at a Glance:

  • Top day for page views: April 19, Boston manhunt (173 mm page views)
  • Top day for live streams: April 19, Boston manhunt (2.4 mm live video starts)
  • Top day for total video starts: April 19, Boston manhunt (21 mm)
  • Top day on social media, and on record: November 18, typhoon in Philippines (1.2 mm social referrals)
  • Top story: Photos: People we Lost in 2013 (137 mm page views)
  • Top video: Video shows Asiana plane’s moment of impact (3.4 mm video starts)
  • Top iReport: “India: The story you never wanted to hear” (1.5mm page views)
  • Top tweet: @CNNBRK about the death of actor Cory Monteith (41k+ total actions) (Source: Twitter API 2013)
  • Top Facebook post: Michelle Obama’s dress for the Inauguration (129k+ total actions)
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