According to comScore’s latest Media Metrix report of the top Web properties in July 2012, Instagram was the top-gaining property during the month, while online trading was the top-gaining site category. Also, Google held its top spot in the world of display ads.
Instagram.com saw its audience of unique visitors surge 38 percent, from 16.5 million in June to 22.7 million in July. Overall, the photo-filter site was the No. 56 overall Web property in July. This can probably be attributed to Instagram’s improved site functionalities.
On Wednesday the U.S. Federal Trade Commission gave the green light to Facebook’s $1 billion acquisition of Instagram when it closed its antitrust investigation into the deal and took no action.
The Business/Finance – Online Trading site category saw its audience grow 23 percent month-over-month to finish July with 10.7 million unique visitors. In this category, Fidelity Investments ranked at the top with 3.7 million visitors, up 16 percent.
Community – Pets was the second-fastest growing site category, as its audience grew 18 percent. Retail – Toys (up 11 percent) and Community – Beauty/Fashion/Style (up 11 percent) also saw strong growth.
Overall, comScore found that Google Sites was the top Web property in July with 190.4 million visitors. Microsoft Sites followed with 168.7 million visitors, while Yahoo Sites was third with 162.6 million visitors.
Facebook was fourth on the list with 160.7 million visitors, followed by AOL Inc. with 110.2 million, Ask Network with 85.7 million, Wikimedia Foundation Sites with 84.0 million, Apple Inc. with 81.0 million and Comcast NBCUniversal with 76.8 million. Comcast NBCUniversal benefited from the Olympic Games.
The U.S. boasted 221.2 million unique Internet users in July, according to comScore.
Google was the top syndicated display ad property with a reach of 82.6 percent of the U.S. Internet population in July, followed by ShareThis with 80.4 percent, Yahoo Sites with 73.5 percent, Facebook with 72.7 percent and Outbrain with 68.5 percent.
Facebook recently announced the launch of its Sponsored Results search ads API. The program enables advertisers to place ads in the list of “type-ahead” search results, which can target Facebook Pages, Places, apps and users who enable subscriptions on the site. Disney, Zynga and Marvel are among the advertisers to test out the new format early on. Not many users are seeing these ads just yet.
Google Ad Network was the leading ad network/buy-side network in July with a reach of 93.4 percent, followed by PulsePoint with 89.9 percent, AOL Advertising with 85.4 percent, Genome from Yahoo with 84.3 percent and AT&T AdWorks with 83.5 percent.
comScore also noted that among demand-side platforms, sell-side platforms and ad exchanges, Rubicon Project REVV Platform reached 96.2 percent of the U.S. Internet population in July.