Fixture release day, one of the most anticipated days in The Football League calendar, saw a host of new digital records set this week as fans around the world logged on to see club schedules for the 2015/16 season.
Sky Bet Championship, League 1 and League 2 fixtures were all revealed on club websites at 9am on Wednesday 17th June. In just 24 hours a record 3 million page views had been recorded across The FL interactive (FLi) network.
Across the divisions, Sheffield Wednesday were the top ranking club in the Championship attracting 61,740 page views and 20,407 unique users. Nottingham Forest weren’t far behind, with 60,371 page views and 19,909 unique users.
Sheffield United came in top of League 1 with 35,416 page views and 12,966 unique users. Meanwhile, Bristol Rovers supporters were eagerly anticipating their swift return to The Football League as they topped the League 2 charts with 34,835 page views and 10,383 unique users, putting them on a par with a number of Championship clubs.
With record traffic recorded in 2014, the League’s digital arm, FL Interactive worked closely with technology partners Sapient to ensure the League’s network was ready for a dramatic spike in users.
Preparations proved prudent as 2015’s fixture release day eclipsed records set last year. A 38 per cent growth in unique users totalling 1.4 million delivered the 3 million page views across mobile and desktop devices.
With the total number of site unique users now 88 per cent higher than in 2013 and the number of page views jumping 116 per cent in the same period, Russell Scott, Director of Content at The Football League outlined contributing factors behind the growth:
“More strategic use of social media to FLi channels coupled with an increased volume of content from clubs were two significant reasons digital records broken on fixture release day. We saw 3,214 items and 883 new articles published throughout the day giving fans reasons to come back and revisit club sites.”
“Similarly, Search Engine Optimisation improvements coupled with a new mobile platform introduced by FLi have significantly improved our club rankings in Google search returns.
“Once again, fixture release day has proved to be the biggest day of the year for club websites and I’m delighted that the network has performed well.”