Outsell Research analyzed unique visitors to 25 newspaper sites and found the worst performer on the list was MercuryNews.com, which lost 30 percent of visitors during a one-year period that ended last July, according to E&P. Gannett's network of 100 sites fell 2 percent, the LA Times was down 3 percent and USA Today declined 9 percent. NYTimes.com dropped 12 percent during the period, though its top columnists were on the paid side of its site then.
"We see that many news Web sites actually lost ground year-over-year, welcoming fewer unique visitors," wrote Outsell's Ken Doctor, a former Knight Ridder Digital exec. Here's Outsell's press release describing its research. The actual report can be obtained for a fee.