Apple going strong online, though holiday Web store traffic was flat

January 17, 2007, 2:00 AM UTC

Applejobs_2 Steve Jobs and Apple (AAPL) are doing well with their online strategy, according to new numbers released by Nielsen//Netratings ahead of the company’s earnings announcement today. One possible point of concern: Nielsen says traffic to the Apple Store this holiday season was flat compared to the year before. Details from the research firm are below:

  • In Q4 2006, Web traffic to the Apple parent company grew 26 percent year over year, from a three month average monthly unique audience of 31.3 million to 39.6 million.
  • In December 2006, the Apple Web brand ranked No. 1 in its category, Hardware Manufacturers.
  • iTunes, Apple Product Information & Support and .mac were the top three fastest growing Apple Web channels year over year in Q4 (see Table 1). Apple Store and QuickTime saw flat growth over the same time period but grew 49 percent and 3 percent from Q3 to Q4 2006, respectively.

Table 1: Fastest Growing Apple Web Channels, Q4* Year over Year (U.S., Home and Work)



  Avg. Unique Audience (000) Q4-’05 Avg. Unique Audience (000) Q4-’06 % change


iTunes 16831 26436 57%


Apple Product Info & Support 14244 18419 29%


.mac 3041 3927 29%

Source: Nielsen//NetRatings, January 2007

*Quarterly Web traffic based on a three month average monthly unique audience.