This week comScore released some numbers from its new Media Metrix Multi-Platform product and they highlight the effect that mobile is having on popular health sites. In the top 50 worldwide sites the two relevant health ones are:
- #31 WebMD
- #41 Everyday Health
Also, since 50% of users discuss health on their social channels, it is worthwhile to look at some of the larger social sites to review their mobile lift as well:
- #4 Facebook
- #9 Wikipedia
- #24 Twitter
What is tracked?
The comScore report shows the monthly unique visitors for the sites split by:
- Desktop: those visitors who visited at least once on a regular PC (laptop or desktop)
- Mobile: those visitors who visited at least once on a mobile device (smartphone or tablet)
- Mobile Only: the number of mobile visitors who did not also visit on a desktop. This number shows the “lift” that the site gets from
|Rank||Site||Desktop||Mobile||Mobile Only||Mobile Lift|
The average mobile lift (excluding the three top sites which are special purpose outliers such as Pandora radio and Zynga) is 31%. It is interesting to note that both WebMD and Everyday Health outperform the average in terms of the percentage of users who visit on mobile devices.
Speculating on why mobile is such a large part of these health websites’ traffic is intriguing. We would need to conduct some primary research to find out for sure, but some initial thoughts are:
Symptoms are noticed when the patient is out of the home and the trigger sparks a search on the condition that finds the large health portals.
Conditions that are embarrassing are more likely to be reviewed on mobile, away from the family computer where the significant other and children can see the browsing history.
These sites have good mobile experience and users have found that they don’t need the desktop version.
Regardless of why, the fact is that health seems to be over-indexing for mobile. Keep this in mind during your next site redesign.