I was recently asked for some follow up analysis to a previous post I did last December. In a post about Tabloid Fantasy Leagues I provided a graph depicting traffic to ESPN.com, Sportsline.com, and Yahoo.com for traditional fantasy sports content. As a result I did an analysis for the same sites spanning November "˜06 to November "˜07.
I quickly noticed some interesting general market trends. First, traffic to these Fantasy Sports sites is growing pretty rapidly; 14.5% since November ’06. Additionally, as you can pretty obviously see the two most popular fantasy sports are clearly football and college basketball during March Madness.
But in addition to these general trends I also found some more competitive stats. Yahoo! dominates the marketplace and the gap has widened in the past year. 57% of traffic to the three sites over the last year was to Yahoo!, a percentage that was pretty consistent month to month, except for March. Additionally, the difference in traffic between Yahoo! and its biggest competitor grew 7.5% over last year, while Yahoo!’s overall traffic grew 15.6%. Not only does Yahoo! dominate the fantasy sports market in general, but it controls the biggest single sport: football. While I personally am a big fan of Sportsline, I seem to be in the minority on this one, as Sportsline’s traffic actually declined over the last year. Sportsline’s lost its #2 market position as it was overtaken by ESPN, whose fantasy traffic grew 23%.
Clearly the fantasy sports market continues to thrive. Yahoo! is the clear #1 fantasy sports site and it continues to grow and expand its lead. ESPN and Sportsline only total around 1/3 of the market and have a long way to go if they are going to catch Yahoo! any time soon. The fantasy football season is coming to a close and the next big sport is college basketball in March. We’ll see if they are able to close the gap"¦.