Top News websites in the #MENA for 2012

Forbes Middle East logo

Forbes Middle East logo

Ever wondered where the MENA region gets is news from online? With the year wrapping up, Forbes Middle East released a report on the traffic numbers and social media figures for the major news portals, news channels and newspapers.

Below are the top lists, for the entire lists you can check Forbes Middle East’s website.

Top 10 News portals in the MENA for 2012

# Name Country Visits (M) Uniques (M) Min. on site Social Engagement %
1 Masrawy Egypt 209.03 47.01 9:08 23.38
2 Sabq KSA 376.86 53.61 5:44 15.63
3 Hespress Morocco 278.99 52.22 8:41 20.50
4 Hawaa World Regional 142.33 30.84 8:58 16.00
5 Ammon News Jordan 94.77 57.42 9:31 18.13
6 Ana Zahra Regional 19.98 9.15 5:58 22.00
7 Kooora Regional 582.62 103.55 7:11 9.75
8 Khaberni Jordan 58.55 37.80 2:51 19.88
9 Argaam Regional 21.27 5.58 12:32 10.50
10 Elaph Regional 29.11 8.79 4:23 16.50

The total list comprises of 27 portals with data collected from Aug. 31, 2011 – Aug. 31, 2012 using Google Analytics, its not mentioned whether this information was voluntarily handed over or if it was collected from their media kits or whether it was proofed by an independent third party, however we’ll give them the benefit of the doubt.

Also, I’m not sure how Forbes ranked these portals the weights given for each data set is very vague. For example Masrawy is first but the list clearly shows that the Sabq and Hespress have higher visits and uniques, the only difference is that Masrawy has higher average time spent on the site as well social media engagement, but Hespress which occupies third place is not very far away from Masrawy in terms of time spent and social media engagement yet it is third behind Sabq which has even lower numbers than Hespress when it comes to those criteria’s. So don’t know what to make of that and will leave it up to you.

I understand this is a free report, but just because its free doesn’t mean it can’t be good, right? I wish they revealed their magic formula for ranking the portals, because right now it doesn’t make any sense and several comments on their website were made regarding this point.

Top 10 Newspaper websites in the MENA for 2012

# Name Country Visits (M) Uniques (M) Min. on site Social Engagement %
1 Ahram Egypt 74.52 31.15 11:00 24.13
2 AlYoum ElSabe Egypt 842.84 145.11 6:59 24.63
3 Gulf News UAE 77.11 20.34 4:32 19.13
4 Ech-Chorouk El Yaoumi Algeria 79.17 21.85 8:22 18.75
5 AlRiyadh KSA 123.93 35.52 4:41 19.00
6 Okaz KSA 42.56 12.60 4:56 19.50
7 AlRai Kuwait 17.03 5.18 6:54 26.00
8 Emarat AlYoum UAE 26.04 7.99 11:25 19.00
9 AlBayan UAE 15.45 7.49 3:48 27.13
10 As-Safir Lebanon 13.93 2.98 9:21 17.38

Top 3 Satellite News Channel websites in the MENA for 2012

# Name Country Visits (M) Uniques (M) Min. on site
1 AlArabiya UAE 306.63 69.05 6:28
2 AlJazeera Qatar 277.88 55.71 10:04
3 Russia Today Russia 50.11 26.40 3:20

Top 10 Newspapers on Social Networks in the MENA for 2012

# Name Country Tweets FB Likes Google + LinkedIn Youtube views
1 AlBayan UAE 67,659 77,558 12,228 500 1,992,841
2 AlRai Kuwait 64,094 154,082 0 0 927,427
3 AlYoum ElSabe Egypt 101,282 1,821,467 7,907 0 10,554,460
4 Ahram Egypt 134,069 969,068 0 187 1,363,364
5 The Daily Star Lebanon 27,544 27,801 916 386 3,339,469
6 Khaleej Times UAE 9,531 55,300 734 610 97,843
7 Jordan Times Jordan 23,290 31,125 0 143 1,838
8 AlAnba Kuwait 17,029 60,641 0 0 414,795
9 AlQuds Palestine 25,203 *508,757 0 0 3,788,560
10 Al-Ittihad UAE 88,117 21,027 0 0 0

*AlQuds facebook likes was corrected by me after checking for their URL, Forbes has reported that they had 460,000 likes , but the correct number on the AlQuds newspaper Facebook page is 508,757.

Which news website do you check normally? Let us know in the comments below. Or get in touch and stay updated with latest news from the region.

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Having worked with top digital agencies in the MENA region for the past several of years I'm now looking now to venture on my own with small side projects in online, social and mobile. Things I like include: gaming, sports, technology, social media, start ups, funny things and reading about new bright ideas.