RealTime IT News

Report: French Domains Claim Top Spots in New Rankings

French Web domains have pushed their way into the top ten in terms of audience-share rankings in France, ahead of the American competition.

According to a study by MMXI Europe on November Internet trends in Germany, France and the U.K., per-capita online time also rose in France.

"Although some of the most visited global domains [in Europe] belong to American companies, local sites are also reaching the top of the rankings, especially in France where use of the national language is considered a real added value," said Olivier Daufresne of MMXI France.

France Telecom's Wanadoo was the top-visited global domain in France in November, with a 51.3 percent penetration rate, followed by Yahoo.com, at 41.4 percent and Multimania at 30.3 percent, MMXI said.

MMXI defines global domains as those including all sites under the same name, regardless of the URL suffix or online service, for example, 123.fr, 123.net, 123.com, etc. The penetration rate refers to the percentage of study participants that accessed a particular site's content.

After Microsoft and AOL, three more French domains -- Voila, Club-Internet and Chez.com -- made the French top ten, which is rounded out by Geocities and MSN. Compared to MMXI's October rankings, Altavista.com dropped out and Chez.com entered at eighth. Geocities gained a place to ninth, and MSN fell one to 10th.

Overall, portals and ISPs were the most visited global domains in Europe. However, growth of e-commerce sites paralleled increased Internet use, although France lagged behind growth in the U.K. and Germany in this case, MMXI said.

"This phenomenon is certainly benefiting from the holiday shopping season," said MMXI spokesperson Arielle Dinard. "We've already noted this trend in the United States, where e-commerce sites showed remarkable growth in the November rankings," she said.

The study found that French users logged on an average of 204.3 minutes per person in November, up from 188.7 minutes in October, about an 8 percent increase, while German users went online an average 336.4 minutes, compared to 296.5 minutes in October, a 13.5 percent gain.

With offices in London, Paris and Nuremberg, MMXI Europe issued its first audience-share rankings for online services and Internet sites in October. The company -- which claims to have 3,000 representative study participants each in Germany, France and the U.K. -- monitors the online movements of its participants with a patented software.