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Traffic tools help publishers go viral

Data: Parse.ly; Table: Naema Ahmed/Axios

Google has created a new tool to help newsrooms make coverage decisions based on real-time data of what’s being searched on Google and talked about on Twitter, executives tell Axios.

Why it matters: It’s the latest effort by a tech giant to help give newsrooms access to data that could help them make content decisions around what's trending online.

  • Facebook bought CrowdTangle, a tool that publishers use to see what's trending on the web, in 2016.

The tool, called Trending Topics, is available for free to any newsroom that utilizes Google’s free analytics platform, Google Analytics.

The big picture: Google argues newsrooms can boost user loyalty by using the tool to cover the topics they are most interested in.

But new data from traffic analytics company Parse.ly finds that not all publishers need to be as reliant on what's going viral.

  • The data suggests that health and lifestyle content tend to get most of its traffic referrals internally from the home pages or other destinations within the publishers' ecosystem.
  • This means that for some niche topics, understanding what's going viral means more than it does for others.

The bottom line: News publishers need this tool more than evergreen lifestyle publishers.

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