Many critics were eager to write Upworthy’s obituary based on recent traffic statistics that seemed to show the site was suffering due to a change in Facebook’s newsfeed algorithm, but that doesn’t appear to be the case
I love Business Insider, but articles like this should probably be taken with a grain of salt.
The chart that Business Insider used, which came from the Quantcast traffic-measuring firm, seemed pretty conclusive: it showed that Upworthy reached more than 80 million unique visitors in the month of November, and then its reach dropped dramatically — to the point where it reached less than 60 million in the first part of January, for a decline of about 40 percent.
This seemed like a fairly obvious sign that Facebook’s algorithm change — which the social network has suggestedwas designed to favor“high quality” news sources over those that traffic in gimmicky viral content — was penalizing Upworthy. But a broader view of the Quantcast data shows that things aren’t nearly as bad for the site as that first graph showed.
If you segment the Upworthy traffic measured by Quantcast by week instead of by month, you can see that the siteoften gets huge spikesof visitors — a result of a post that does particularly well on Facebook or some other platform — and that these inevitably subside, as they do with any publisher. Upworthy had several in November that pushed weekly uniques above the 35 million mark.
More specifically, articles about a site’s traffic getting crushed.
We see it all the time, from social media to SEO.