Nielsen has released the sites visited by the most New Zealanders this year and it's no surprise Google and Facebook remain in the top two spots. New Zealand might have a relatively small population, but Kiwis love using the internet – with about 89 percent of the population actively using the internet.
The Nielsen Online Ratings data only includes January-October 2018 and does not take into account mobile apps.
It is never a surprise to see Google topping the charts as the most visited website in New Zealand – as the website comes in number one globally. In fact, Google is so synonymous with browsing the web, that it's easy to forget the gateway to the internet is actually a website rather than the internet itself. In New Zealand, Google had 3,337,000 average monthly audience, so it is safe to say the vast majority of us use the website regularly. Google's popularly has also grown slightly from last year, when the site came in with an average monthly audience of 3,283,000.
Despite a major global privacy scandal and a huge timeline shake-up, Facebook remains New Zealand's second most popular website. With an average monthly audience of 2,680,000, Facebook remains untouchable to other social media platforms – even as users leave the platform in droves. Globally, Facebook has more than 2.2 billion active users and more than half of New Zealand's population are active on the platform. While the platform retained its second place spot, the average monthly audience is down slightly from last year's 2,703,000.
Website combo MSN/Outlook/Bing/Skype is another example of a retained spot with fewer audience numbers. In last year's survey it came in third with 2,631,000 but this year it's dropped 174,000 to 2,457,000.
YouTube continues to grow in New Zealand, with a 2,412,000 average monthly audience up from 2,308,000 last year. The company, which is owned by Google, proved its commitment to growing its New Zealand audience when it conducted nationwide research to aid advertisers. The 750 surveys found identified three distinct groups our the 2.2 million New Zealanders who have accessed YouTube: parents, Generation X (1961-1981) and Millennials (1981-1996).
Stuff remains the top local website in New Zealand with an average monthly audience of 2,018,000 – which is down from last year's 2,215,000. It also remains the top news website in New Zealand with an average monthly audience of 268,000 more than its closest competitor, NZ Herald.
Coming in sixth was Microsoft with an average monthly audience of 1,999,000. It remained in the sixth position despite dropping in average audience slightly, from 2,088,000 in 2017.
7. New Zealand Government
The second New Zealand website on the list is the New Zealand Government website up a spot to seventh from last year's eighth place. The average monthly audience has also increased more than 100,000 to 1,892,000. With everything from immigration and visa information, to passport applications and tips for finding work in New Zealand – the website is the official channel for all things New Zealand.
The New Zealand Herald website slipped back a few spots this year – down to eighth and an average monthly audience of 1,750,000. Last year the website came in seventh with 1,949,000 monthly users.
9. Trade Me
Trade Me also moved up a spot in 2018, with an average monthly audience of 1,630,000, down from 1,775,000 last year. While Trade Me looks like the little leagues when compared to global giants like Amazon, it remains a favourite online auction platform for New Zealanders, who use it for their Christmas shopping and fitting out a renovation project to buying a house or even finding love.
Wikipedia remains firmly in the number 10 spot, with an average monthly audience of 1,339,000 – down ever so slightly from last year's 1,396,000 users. A treasure trove of weird and wonderful information, the site is still the go-to location for comprehensive information about every topic imaginable. There are also about 2 million websites in New Zealand that link to Wikipedia.