So, you thought Sports was all about watching games and cheering your favorite team? Think again. It is big business on the Internet and is all set to win the game with live streaming, match highlights, scores, bulletin boards, fan blogs, social networks and fantasy sports services.
According to MediaPost, more than 35% of Internet users depend upon the Internet as their primary source for sports information between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Around 52% of the users go online for sports-related content at least occasionally, while 24% are frequent visitors. Nearly 52% of sports site users seek out scores, while 43% read news stories online.
Around 25% visit sites related to professional or semi-professional teams, 21% visit college and university sites, 13% seek information for fitness and training; 13% read or post blogs or other consumer-generated media, 12% visit fan pages, 10% research equipment and memorabilia and 9% participate in a fantasy sports leagues.
According to eMarketer, Sports advertising on the Internet is growing at a decent pace. It estimates that US online sports advertising revenues comprised 4.9% of the total sports advertising in 2006. It forecasts the share of US online sports advertising revenues to rise to 10% over the next 5 years.
Pew Internet claims that 24% of the young adults within 18-29 either watch or download sports video compared to 14% of those within 30-49, 8% of users 50-64 and just 7% of 65 and older. It also claims that nearly 11 million adult American Internet users participated in sports fantasy leagues online, while about 2 million Internet users went online to oversee and check on their fantasy teams.
Male viewers heavily dominate the sports video audience; online men are almost four times as likely as online women to have watched or downloaded sports video (23% vs. 6%).