The divine and comedy top the bill in charity sector

Charity was on everyone’s lips – and on the tips of their fingers – this month, and this edition of MWi Data takes a look at which charities’ sites were most visited, which types of charitable group and which charities ranked top in terms of connectivity (based on the number of incoming external links to websites).

It will come as little surprise that the top search by charitable brand over the past month was for this year’s Comic Relief event, supported by npower. While Prime Minister Tony Blair attempted to show he was “bovvered” about raising cash for needy causes, so too were consumers eager to do their comic bit for charity. This popularity, alongside extensive media coverage on both television and in the national press, saw the Walkers-supported WalkEars website rank third in terms of searches on brand name. While Comic Relief benefited from advertising and news coverage, so too did the Race for Life site, which would also have been boosted by interested users who perhaps know someone taking part in this year’s event.

It is a little surprising to see that in terms of type searched for, it is Catholic charities that come out on top. Yet it is not surprising to see that children’s and cancer charities figure high in the rankings, no doubt in some part linked to the fundraising efforts of the aforementioned Comic Relief and Race for Life events. Meanwhile, as if to underline the fact we are a nation of animal lovers, animal and dog charities rank third and ninth, perhaps boosted by the recent Crufts Dog Show, held this month in Birmingham.

In terms of connectivity – the best-connected sites in terms of external links to the sites – The Arts Council comes top, followed by the Wellcome Trust, Cancer Research UK and English Heritage. Among the top ten in terms of connectivity, it is interesting to note that half the sites are for heritage bodies, suggesting that third-party sites see great value in displaying links for these charitable organisations – an apparent boon for those groups as in terms of traffic and type, they do not necessarily feature high on users’ agenda.

These results show that front-of-mind and brand awareness has a huge impact on results, but they also show that this does not necessarily bias searches by type; the results also show the strength of external links in terms of driving traffic to your site.

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