More than 200,000 unique users visited southernstar.ie in October, making it the busiest month in the history of the website.
This represents year-on-year growth of more than 100% since October 2019, according to figures sourced from Google Analytics.
This increase highlights the overall reach of The Southern Star according to managing director Seán Mahon.
‘The Southern Star is now reaching a bigger audience than at any time in its history which is really exciting,’ he said. ‘We are now connecting with more readers than ever before, not just in West Cork, but also with people with West Cork connections across Ireland and our diaspora across the globe.
‘It’s also of huge significance to local businesses as our online platform gives advertisers the chance to showcase their products and services to our dedicated readership, at a time when e-commerce is of the utmost importance to them.’ The Southern Star re-launched its online platform in late 2019 and has seen a steady increase in web traffic ever since.
An improved user experience has been a major reason for that according, to digital manager Jack McCarron.
‘When we were redesigning our website last year we did everything with our readers in mind. They deserve the best possible user experience and we are confident that we are delivering that,’ said Mr McCarron.
Digital specific content has also played a major role in the growth, according to editor Con Downing. ‘Our readers are digitally savvy and it shows. The most read story in the history of the website was an Election Live blog which we ran for the 2019 local elections, which tells us that this is the type of content readers want to engage with,’ Con said.
‘We have also launched several popular podcast series which we see as an important part of our digital strategy, moving forward into 2021.
The recently launched ‘Online Directory for West Cork’ which sits within southernstar.ie is another section of the site that has been drawing eyeballs recently.
With over 100 businesses already signed up, it’s fast becoming an invaluable resource for locals and tourists, and can be found at www.southernstar.ie/directories.
‘With over 50,000 social media followers to go along with over 200,000 unique monthly website users, The Southern Starhas the most engaged online audience in West Cork,’ Mr Mahon said.