Al Arabiya news channel proved yet another time that its a cut above the rest when its online presence topped the Forbes Middle East’s Top News Channels Online list.
The channel ranked first on the list's website of a news channel category.
“The constantly evolving nature of online media is very important in helping the spread of communication around the world. Most importantly, it reinforces traditional media; rather than just overlapping print and broadcast, it drives integration”, said Maha Kaddoura, a senior researcher at Forbes Middle East.
“Today, with new media continuously evolving to serve a changing society, whether it’s innovations in smart phone applications, radio, TV, print, interactive websites, or social media, nothing is permanent. It is simply a non-stop digital revolution”, she added.
Al Arabiya has the highest recorded number of online visitors with a staggering data figure of 306.3 million, 21.48 percent of which was accounted for by new visitors.
The website saw 69.05 million visitors between the 31st of August 2011 and 31st August 2012 alone.
Second to Al Arabiya is Qatar’s Al Jazeera with a recorded 277.89 million visits to its website, it has attained 55.71 million unique visitors. Al Jazeera has the highest recorded average time spent on a news channel online – 10 minutes and four seconds—as well as the highest average number of pages per visit with a recorded 3.49.
Third on the list is Rusiya al-Yaum, headquartered in Moscow, Russia but broadcasted in Arabic. The online channel has a new visit rate of 51.37 percent, surprisingly the highest amongst the three news online channels featured in the Forbes list.
Al Arabiya’s award was received on Wednesday by the channel’s Arabic news website deputy editor, Fahad Saud, during an awards ceremony in Dubai. The event was attended by Editor-in-Chiefs from different news websites in the Arab world.
“We are so happy to reveal this list for the third time. We believe strongly in supporting the media and emphasizing the importance of its role, which is greater now more than ever”, said Nasser Bin Aqeel al Tayyar, president of Arab Publisher House, the exclusive publisher of Forbes Middle East, in a press statement.
According to Kaddoura, the yearly Top Media Online in the Arab World list “highlights the performance of Arab media outlets online in terms of website traffic, engagement, services offered, as well as how active and popular they are on social media platforms”.
She added that the data and statistics give them a clear picture of how “hard they are working to distribute messages to their evolving audiences”.