Global audience insights from the fourth quarter of 2023

In the fourth quarter of 2023, Average Engaged Time rose in the Middle East, Search traffic grew in Southeast Asia, and pageviews from Social rebounded in Africa, Central / Eastern Europe, and Central Asia.

Read on for more global audience insights from our fourth quarter research below.

Compare to our previous insights: Q3 2023 | Q2 2023 | Q1 2023 

Engaged Time remains highest in the Middle East and Central / Eastern Europe

Readers in the Middle East were the most engaged audience with 40.7 seconds of Average Engaged Time, up from 33.9 seconds in the previous quarter. Central / Eastern Europe and Asia / Pacific followed with 36.5 and 29.4 seconds, respectively.

Outside of increases in the Middle East and Central / Eastern Europe, most regions saw slight decreases in Average Engaged Time quarter over quarter.

Mobile pageviews remain high to end the year

87% of pageviews in Southeast Asia occurred on mobile devices in the fourth quarter. Central Asia and Africa followed with 84% and 77%, respectively.

No region received less than 68% of its pageviews from visitors on mobile devices.

Search traffic grows in Southeast Asia and Asia / Pacific

41% of pageviews in Southeast Asia came from Search in the fourth quarter, up from 39% in the third quarter. Asia / Pacific also increased pageviews from Search, rising from 23% to 25%.

North America was the only region to experience a decline, falling from 20% to 19%.

Pageviews from Social rebound

Pageviews from social networks increased in Africa, Central / Eastern Europe, and Central Asia last quarter. Africa saw the largest increase from 19% to 24%.

No region saw a decline compared to the third quarter, reversing a downward trend dating back to the beginning of the year.

Loyalty highest in Northern and Central / Eastern Europe

Northern Europe had the highest percentage of pageviews from loyal readers at 48%. Central /  Eastern Europe followed at 44%.

The Middle East saw the largest increase from quarter to quarter, improving from 24% to 28%.

Takeaways from our fourth quarter research

1. Average Engaged Time is typically lower at the end of the year.

With the exception of the Middle East and Central / Eastern Europe, Average Engaged Time declined in the fourth quarter. This is a normal pattern we’ve observed in recent years, and we expect engagement to rise in the first quarter of 2024.

2. Pageviews from Social are rebounding.

In the first half of 2023, Social traffic fell from 23% to 20% of External traffic, in large part due to declining Facebook traffic to news and media sites. In the last quarter of the year, social traffic percentages held steady or increased in all regions.

3. Audiences are Mobile.

In any given region, at least 68% of site visits occur on mobile devices, and in two of those regions, it’s more than 80%.

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