Study: Yahoo most trafficked brand on Net

Internet titan Yahoo Inc. said Wednesday that it has become the most trafficked Internet brand in the U.S., holding significant weight in the categories of search, finance, music and personalized information, according to a study by researcher Nielsen//NetRatings Inc.

The findings were revealed in a Nielsen//NetRatings MarketView report, tracking home and work Web use for February 2002. Nielsen//NetRatings services are provided by a partnership between NetRatings Inc., Nielsen Media Research Inc. and AC Nielsen. The survey measured the average amount of time users spent on certain sites to ascertain the popularity of different Web properties.

According to the survey, Yahoo ranked number one in terms of minutes users spent on its branded Web sites per month, trailed by Microsoft Corp. Network (MSN) and America Online Inc.

The Sunnyvale, California, Internet company also said that in 18 of the Internet markets measured, it ranked in the top three and came in number one in five categories. Yahoo landed in the lead with its Yahoo Search, My Yahoo, Yahoo Finance, Yahoo Music and Yahoo GeoCities personal Web page service, the company said.

While the user survey indicated that Yahoo was holding its ground in the cutthroat world of online content and service providers in February, it remains to be seen if the company's more recent moves to shift from free to fee services will affect its popularity. Earlier this month, the company started charging for some of its e-mail and GeoCities services.

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