Reddit Grows as Digg Stumbles: Traffic Up 300% in 2010

When Digg v.4 imploded earlier this year, a lot of disgruntled Digg users moved over to Reddit, the smaller and brainier Conde Nast-owned cousin of Kevin Rose’s brainchild and put the site squarely on the map. With only four engineers on its staff, Reddit managed to turn 2010 into a breakout year for the site.

According to the site’s own stats, traffic to Reddit grew 300% in 2010. While the site’s servers served up a respectable 250 million pageviews in January 2010, that number was up to 829 million in December. The length of the average visit to Reddit also grew from 12 minutes and 41 seconds to 15 minutes and 21 seconds. To fulfill all of these requests, Reddit scaled up from 50 servers to 119 servers over the course of the year.


Reddit’s users also donated $185,356.70 to the relief efforts in Haiti and $601,269 to DonorsChoose.

Should Reddit Thank Digg?

How much of this growth is attributable to Digg’s issues earlier this year and how much of it is simply organic growth is hard to pinpoint. There can be little doubt, though, that Digg’s missteps gave Reddit a lot of exposure but it’s not clear how many of these new users stuck around.

While Digg’s pageviews are only now recovering from the v4 debacle, Quantcast’s data now pegs Reddit as the larger site of the two. At the same time, though, the data shows a major dip for Digg but no similar spike for Reddit. Given that neither of the two sites directly report data to Quantcast, we have to take these numbers with a grain of salt, but to me, it feels like Reddit’s success isn’t so much attributable to Digg’s stumbles but to Reddit’s own success and organic growth.