Press Room

Nielsen Launches Largest, Most Representative Online Audience Measurement Panel In U.S.

Enhanced panel reports on more than 30,000 Web sites and includes more than 230,000 panelists; delivers major innovations in quality and depth

New York, US – July 13, 2009

The Nielsen Company today announced the launch of the industry’s most advanced panel and platform for measuring Internet audiences. The new panel increases Nielsen’s measurement of Web sites from 3,000 to more than 30,000, provides better representation of Hispanics, teens, and cell phone-only households, and improves coverage of multiple personal computers in households.

The new Internet measurement panel is more than eight times larger than Nielsen’s previous sample. The enhanced platform employs innovative panel calibration techniques, including the use of Nielsen’s TV/Internet convergence panel, providing more coverage of hard-to-measure Internet users. With this launch, Nielsen is introducing the largest panel for online audience measurement in the U.S., making it significantly more representative of the entire Internet population.

“There is incredible demand for more accurate, reliable and high-quality Web audience measurement. Nielsen’s new panel is a huge leap forward in measurement to address that need,” said John Burbank, CEO of Nielsen’s online division. “Nielsen continues to strive to provide clients and the industry with the best, most insightful research possible. This enhanced platform enables us to do just that. One of the most exciting things about this new methodology is by including Nielsen’s TV/Internet convergence panel for online audience reporting, we are laying the foundation for better future crossplatform measurement.”

Greater Granularity and Deeper Demographics 
Nielsen’s underlying methodology for this expanded panel is already in use in eight international markets. Now the U.S. market will benefit from this deeper level of analysis, including better demographic granularity and Reach/Frequency analysis—supporting more sophisticated media planning capabilities and enabling better targeting of online consumers. This new panel and measurement approach is the result of significant Nielsen Company investment in developing more transparent and innovative research methodologies and the culmination of months of close collaboration with clients and the Media Ratings Council (MRC).

Internet audience measurement data reflecting the new panel is now available with the July 11 “data of record” release of Nielsen’s NetView, VideoCensus, search and online retail measurement services.

Client Response
Judit Nagy, VP of Research, Fox Audience Network: “Nielsen’s methodology enhancements will deliver an improved level of reporting of all key online metrics and online entities, and—most importantly—serve as the basis for a more comprehensive 360-degree multimedia measurement toolset. Nielsen’s unique market position, which allows the measurement of consumer behavior on platforms such as television, mobile and—now to a larger extent—online, gives them a great opportunity to track the ever-changing media landscape. This is a much awaited and much appreciated upgrade from Nielsen.”

John Neitzel, Group Research Manager, Microsoft Advertising:
“We are excited to see Nielsen take this leap forward in the evolution of online measurement. In combination with increasing the number of sites, the new audience methodology will help ensure that a truly representative panel of the Internet is being measured, which can help improve online advertising effectiveness.”

Yaakov Kimelfeld, Ph.D., SVP, Digital Research and Analytics Director, MediaVest Worldwide:
“This enhanced methodology builds on Nielsen’s trademark approach of combining methodological rigor with creativity and innovation. It is the right tool for advertisers and agencies to navigate the brave new world of media fragmentation and increasingly complex interactions between novel creative formats and groundbreaking distribution platforms. This release gives us the rich data for both media planning and campaign effectiveness analyses we need—we fully expect to gain fresh indepth insights into online behaviors and to uncover audience trends that previously passed below the radar.”

Roger Baron, SVP, Director of Media Research, DRAFTFCB:
“Nielsen’s greatly expanded sample is a welcome improvement to audience measurement across the industry. It will enable us to analyze the demographics and the browsing behavior of visitors to a great many more websites on the Internet’s Long Tail—we’ll now have the ability to fully analyze traffic patterns and demographics of small, niche, targeted sites and better reach online targets.”