Facebook users more loyal to news sites than Google users

Google’s aggregated Google News site draws more traffic to news outlets than any other online source, but users who track news on Facebook are more likely to revisit those news sites.

A recent report from Web metrics group Hitwise shows that 67% of people who are linked to a print-media Web site (e.g., USAToday.com or WallStreetJournal.com) from Google News returned to that site during the same week. That’s a pretty significant return rate, but it was eclipsed by Facebook, which provided a revisit rate of 78%. There were similar results for visitors to broadcast media Web sites.

Hitwise collected the data in the first week of March, analyzing unique viewers to these sites and where they were directed from. Then from all these viewers, it determined how many visited multiple times from the same source.

Heather Hopkins, an analyst for the firm, noted that results from both Google News and Facebook were promising. “This reinforces the long-term value to News and Media organizations of working with the likes of Google News and Facebook,” she said in an Eweek story.

There is a winner in this story, though, and it is Facebook. It’s the latest unexpected victory for the social media site. Earlier this month it was also the most visited Web site in the US, mind-bogglingly surpassing Google.

Facebook currently has over 400 million active users, half of which log in every day.