Top Conservative Websites Saw Steep Traffic Drop in July With The Federalist Losing 77%

Daily Signal lost 74% and even Fox News saw a 2% drop compared to July 2022

Website traffic (Photo credit: Getty Images)
Website traffic (Photo credit: Getty Images)

Compared to the same time period in 2022, July 2022 wasn’t very good to several of the top conservative websites. That’s according to media watchdog the TheRighting, which tracks traffic and activity among prominent right wing publications using data from Comscore.

Out of the 20 outlets it regularly monitors, 75% of them suffered deep drops in traffic year over year.

Hardest hit was The Federalist (-77%), Daily Signal (-74%), Gateway Pundit (-72%) and Washington Beacon (-61%). But they weren’t alone. Other afflicted publications include RedState (-50%), Breitbart (-45%), the Washington Times (-42%), Daily Wire (-37%), Townhall (30%) and PJ Media (-24%).

Even conservative media titan Fox News wasn’t immune. Monthly traffic to the network’s website dipped slightly to 74.7 million unique visitors, a decline of 2% compared to the same period in 2022.

It wasn’t all bad news for the right wing mediasphere however. Fox News star Sean Hannity’s podcast increased 140% compared to 2020, almost certainly on the strength of high-profile guests including Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and Donald Trump. The Washington Examiner (+39%) and Newsmax (+11%) also saw a boost in traffic.

The decline also seems to have affected right wing social media platforms. Donald Trump’s Twitter clone Truth Social dropped the least, declining by 5% compared to 2022. And Gettr, another right wing alternative to Twitter, was hit hardest with a drop of 72%.

TheRighting also tracks Facebook alternative MeWe, which was down by 28% year over year. A representative for MeWe told TheWrap that the the platform is not right wing, and that while the decline in traffic is accurate, it was due to removing people for terms of service violations including hate speech.

“MeWe is not a right-wing platform. They are apolitical, and don’t intentionally attract any specific political affiliation. The decline in numbers to which you are referring, however, is legitimate and is due to MeWe removing those who do not share those goals – including and especially those who spread disinformation, partake in hate speech, and engage in illegal activity,” the representative said.

Meanwhile Rumble, the cloud services, web hosting and video platform preferred by conservatives, saw 31% more traffic.

By comparison, CNN remained the top-trafficked news website with 114,549,000 unique views, an increase of 1%.

But while the drops look stark, it’s unlikely an indicator of a coming apocalypse for conservative content and communities online. As The Righting noted in its report, July 2023 was a relatively slow month for news compared to last year.

“Traffic to most news websites in July was impacted by the relatively slow news environment that characterized the month. Events from last July 2022 such as the Jan. 6 televised hearings, the Highland Park shootings and Biden’s positive test for Covid-19, drew much more audience interest,” Howard Polskin, president and chief curator at TheRighting, said.

Indeed, also missing in 2023 is a contentious and very high stakes midterm election to drive engagement across the political spectrum. With the ongoing GOP Primary debates, the looming 2024 presidential election and most significant of all, Donald Trump’s numerous criminal trials, 2024 may well be a boom year for right wing media.