Oxfam was the most visited charity website of 2006, according to a list produced by web monitoring service Hitwise.
The top five also includes Cancer Research UK’s Race For Life site, and the websites of the NSPCC, Shelter England and Sport Relief. However, there are also some notable absentees from the list, compared to the list of the top ten fundraising charities produced by the Charities Aid Foundation. These include the National Trust, the British Heart Foundation and the RNLI.
The top ten ranking is reproduced below.
The list has been produced for Hitwise’s UK Online Performance Awards 2006. The organisation names the top ten UK websites in 50 industries; charities are listed under the category ‘community – humanitarian’.
Sue Fidler, director of communications and solutions at the Charity Technology Trust, said many of the charities on the list – such as Oxfam, Race For Life, Sport Relief and Children in Need – have young audiences and do a lot of publicity using their URL. “Christian Aid also does a huge amount on its site and has a very proactive team,” she said.
She added that the charities missing from the Hitwise list tend to be older, “bricks and mortar” charities. “Younger charities tend to use the web much more aggressively,” she said. “It’s like an established business like Waterstone’s trying to catch up with Amazon.”
However, she described the absence of the National Trust, the UK’s third biggest fundraising charity, as a “missed opportunity”. “They ought to be doing a huge advertising campaign to get visitors through the door,” she said.
She also expressed surprise that the main website of Cancer Research UK – Britain’s largest fundraising charity – isn’t on the Hitwise list. “They seem to have spent a huge amount publicising it this year,” she said. “For example, they have bought up the right hand column on search engine Everyclick for about two months.”
Meanwhile, Hitwise has also announced that Everyclick – which gives 50 per cent of its gross revenue to charity – has entered the top ten of the UK search engines. It is currently the ninth most used site, ranking above Alta Vista, Lycos and Excite.
Hitwise's list of top ten 'community - humanitarian' charity websites for 2006
2 www.raceforlifesponsorme.org (CRUK)
6 www.togscalendar.org (Children in Need)
The Charities Aid Foundation's list of top ten Fundraising charities for 2006
1 Cancer Research UK
3 National Trust
4 British Heart Foundation
7 Salvation Army
8 MacMillan Cancer Relief
10 Save the Children UK