Piper Jaffray senior analyst Gene Munster has used web traffic information from Alexa to estimate the market share of download stores in his “traffic report card.”
Not surprisingly, Apple.com received an “A” rating. “In our minds, Apple.com earned an A as a result of having the largest 3 month percentage change in web traffic rank, which was up 11% and a reach increase of 11%,” Munster said. “Clearly, not all visitors to Apple.com use iTunes, but we do believe Apple traffic is indicative of interest in Apple’s iPod and iTunes.”
Munster also gave Napster an “A,” noting that Napster.com is the only other audio download website with an increase in rank (7%) and had a 21% increase in reach. “Napster’s marketing appears to be having a positive impact on traffic,” the analyst said.
Others included in the survey were Audible.com (Grade: B) and Real.com (Grade: C), both of which experienced drops in average traffic for the 3 months ending 6/30 over the three month average ending 3/30.
“We believe that Apple.com is the clear winner in our second grade report on the audio download industry,” Munster concluded. “Apple has the highest web traffic rank (64) of the four and also has seen the most increase in web traffic rank and reach over the past 3 months.”