The accolade, ‘most-visited commercial site’, has been seized from long-time champion by online auctioneer eBay.

According to Nielsen/Net Ratings, four million additional visitors during March boosted eBay’s total to 22.13m, whereas Amazon could muster only one million extra surfers, bringing its total tally to 22.08m. The report also credits eBay with a higher number of page views and longer average time spent on its site.

eBay also scores when it comes to old-fashioned profitability. It is that rare gem, a dotcom that makes money – and did so from day one. In Q1 2001 the auction site generated profits of $21m.

Amazon in contrast reported a net loss of $49m and has long promised ‘jam tomorrow’ to the increasing cynicism of investors and analysts. Last month it predicted it will move out of the red on an operating basis by the end of this year [WAMN: 25-Apr-01].

News source: BBC Online Business News (UK)