Drawing a direct link between
pollen levels and Web activity, visits to pharmacy sites showed a marked gain in March.
The category saw a solid increase of 23% during the month, which amounted to nearly 8 million U.S. visitors, according to new comScore data.
For younger consumers, March also spelled spring break and leisure time, which greatly benefited toy and teen sites.
Month-over-month, the toy category posted a 19% gain in March -- or about 16 million U.S. visitors -- while traffic to teen sites spiked by 12% to reach roughly 26 million visitors.
Along with managing seasonal allergies, “many Americans looked for ways to enjoy their spring breaks,” said Jeff Hackett, executive vice president of comScore. In the pharmacy category, Express Scripts took top honors with 1.7 million visitors -- up 35% month-over-month -- followed by Caremark.com with 1 million (up 24%), and Dexilant.com with 990,000 visitors (up 115%).
Winners among toy Web sites included Toys “R” Us sites with 5.7 million visitors in March (up 19% month-over-month); The LEGO Group, which saw traffic rise 31% to 3.7 million visitors; and Disney Shopping with 1.2 million visitors (up 14% month-over-month).
IMVU dominated all teen sites with 10.9 million visitors (up 16% month-over-month), followed by Teenspot.com with 4.1 million visitors (up 4%), and Cambio with 2.9 million visitors (up 15%).
“Americans also tuned into sports in a big way during the month, with NCAA March Madness front and center for many sports fans in
addition to the beginning of baseball season and the home stretch for pro basketball and hockey," said Hackett.
Driven by college basketball’s March Madness and the beginning of baseball season, sports sites like MLB, ESPN and SB Nation each earned a spot on comScore’s top-gaining properties chart in March.
MLB ranked as the fastest-growing property with 11.3 million visitors (up 34%), ESPN ranked sixth with 38.4 million (up 28%); and SB Nation ranked seventh with 15.1 million (up 27 %).
Spring cleaning and home renovations led to an significant spike in traffic at Lowes.com -- up 34% month-over-month to 13.7 million visitors in March.
"Pollen Allergy, Girl Sneezing, photo from Shutterstock"