Facebook, Google, BBC Are Christmas's Big Winners

ISP Plusnet and Web Analyst Firm Hitwise have published details that show that Google remained the undisputed champion when it came to UK internet traffic over the Christmas period, followed by Facebook and the BBC.

Plusnet revealed that Facebook traffic peaked on the 25th in late afternoon as people flocked to the website to upload photos and check their friends' statuses.

The study also highlighted the success of shopping websites like Amazon, Argos and Play.com which had already started their sales online before the Boxing day.

Ebay was also amongst the stars as people tried to offload their unwanted gifts or grab a great bargain while iTunes was amongst the most popular websites as punters either spent their gift vouchers or went to download the Christmas number one.

As for Hitwise, their figures showed that Google is the unchallenged number one with more than 8.63 percent of the Christmas traffic, far more than Facebook's 4.65 percent.

However, things could turn out differently as Facebook's traffic over that period grew by 69 percent over last year, which means that next year will a close call.

Altogether Social networking websites account for one in ten of every UK website visits and as a category are not second only to "Entertainment, Search Engines and Shopping and Classifieds" based on Hitwise's categorisation.

Google's other online property Youtube is now the third most popular UK destination online and has overtaken Microsoft Live Mail, commonly known as Hotmail.

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As a footnote, Microsoft appeared on the Plusnet's list at number 10, prompting some to say that the company owes its rank to the fact that many new computers and laptops needed to download new updates and patches when they were first switched on.

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