Apple iTunes visits skyrocket 413% on Christmas Day

Hitwise today announced that the market share of visits to the iTunes website (visits to, not use of downloadable client application) was up 413 percent on Christmas Day 2006 (December 25, 2006) versus Christmas Day 2005 as new iPod owners flocked to the web to download iTunes. In addition, the market share of visits to the Apple Store showed an increase of 110 percent when comparing Christmas Day 2006 to 2005. The Apple Store was the fourth most visited website in the Hitwise Retail Index on Christmas Day 2006.

The market share of visits to, the site for downloading the music software for Microsoft’s MP3 player showed an increase of 1,030 percent on December 25, 2006 versus the previous Monday (December 18, 2006). However, this strong initial performance was overshadowed by the iPod, as the market share of visits to the iTunes website increased by 1,222 percent in the same period, and outnumbered visits to by 30 to 1.

“For the third holiday season in a row, the iPod has been the must-have Christmas gift,” said Bill Tancer, general manager of global research at Hitwise, in the press release. “Competitive offerings have not yet succeeded in capturing the attention of music listeners, and the surge in visits to the Apple Store shows that iPod owners are also engaged in filling and accessorizing their new devices.”

The average daily increase in visits to the Hitwise Retail Index for the 2006 online holiday shopping season (Thanksgiving Day through the Thursday before Christmas) versus the same period in 2005 was 5.9 percent. The days with the largest individual increases over the same day in 2005 were Cyber Monday and Thanksgiving Day. Visits to the Retail 100 Index were up 13.2 percent on Monday, November 27, 2006 versus Monday, November 28, 2005 and up 11.8 percent on Thursday, November 23, 2006 versus Thursday November 24, 2005.

Top US Search Terms Driving Traffic to Shopping & Classifieds Category
For the one-week period ending December 23, 2006
(Brand – Product)
• ebay – nintendo ds
• walmart – ipod
• craigslist – nintendo wii
• best buy – wii
• target – heelys
• circuit city – nintendo ds lite
• – ugg boots
• amazon – uggs
• sears – psp
• – ipods

Source: Hitwise

Since 1997, Hitwise has pioneered a unique, network-based approach to Internet measurement. Through relationships with ISPs around the world, Hitwise’s patented methodology captures the anonymous online usage, search, and conversion behavior of 25 million Internet users.


  1. Since the nano and shuffle come in boxes too small for a traditional CD, Apple directs users to the iTunes website to download the software with the appropriate drivers to support the new iPods.

  2. ugg boots?!?!? Who’s still wearing those things? I thought the style police had them all burned…like…2 years ago.

    On a sidenote, iTS in Germany didn’t let me buy anything until yesterday…’twas givin me the “please try later” blues. And everyone with earphones better than shit still complains about Apple’s 128kbps restriction. I truly hope they’ll up that standard ASAP.

  3. Slashdot’s got a story about how Microsoft is giving away free laptops to bloggers, ‘no strings attached’

    I figure it’s probably a response to Bill seeing all those Apple logos at the last Redmond bloggers meeting =O

  4. I laid my hands on a Zune at Target yesterday. First appearance…it looks good. Touch the click wheel, and it feels like Fisher Price. The clickwheel should not be round at all…it fools you. Also, once the video is in landscape mode…sideways…the controls are almost unusable and throw you for a loop. I really tried to have an open and unbiased mind, but my 5th generation iPod w/video simply eats its lunch ten times over because of the intuitive click wheel, simple readable interface, and the solid feel of the device. I really tried to make the Zune not suck, but fact is, it sucks. Just hold an iPod and hold the Zune and the no comparison is obvious.

  5. Jimbo: Also the number people who received iTunes gift cards. I was helping my little sister with setting up an account, took forever because ITS was slammed with people. We tried to get her to wait a few days but she was too excited.

  6. Better Than Expected: That 30 to 1 stat has nothing to do with Ipod or Zune sales. That’s website visits. 30 to 1 is HUGE difference. If I were betting on a horse I’m not sure I’d take those odds.

    The interesting numbers will be the Zune Dec. sales vs Ipods Dec. sales. Then the next important set of numbers will be 07 sales of both and the sales from their respective online music services.

    Right now is not really the time to measure Zune’s commercial success. Don’t under-estimate Ipod backlash. It’s completely reactionary but stillsignificant.

  7. If 30 = iPod = 75% of the market

    Then 1 = Zune = 2.5% of the Market

    That seems about right for the percentage of wing-nuts that hate iPod because it’s there.

    The interesting number will be the number of Zune owners that throw away or try to resell their Zune POS on E-bay in January.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.