A new publication from JupiterResearch has looked at some interesting trends relating to internet usage and sports lovers.

The company revealed this week that its study showed serious sports fan account for almost a fifth of the total US web user base.

Sports fans are also more likely to dabble in online video, internet shopping and fantasy sports activities, according to the report.

ESPN has recently become one of the top ten providers of video streams on the internet – underlining the growing importance of online video.

Perhaps most interestingly, JupiterResearch analyst and lead author of the report Bobby Tulsiani touched upon the trend of sports fans being more likely to access local sources – such as television, radio and newspapers – for news updates than other internet users.

This could spell significant opportunities for local websites looking to grab sports lovers’ attentions, he noted, going on to stress that effective search engine marketing and search engine optimisation strategies could prove essential in the drive to attract visits from sports fans.

Local blogging, spin-off sites and local promotion could all help such sites to drive more traffic from web-loving sports lovers, JupiterResearch stated.

Meanwhile, David Schatsky, president of JupiterResearch, looked at some of the ways websites could capitalise on the growing use of the internet for sports information purposes apart from paid ads.

He noted that serious sports fans’ love of online shopping and fantasy sports could generate new revenue channels through paid video, tickets and merchandise, among other initiatives.

With this year being a significant 12 months for major sporting events – such as the Olympics – the link between sports and marketing has been emphasised by a number of experts in recent times.

Last month, the European Interactive Advertising Association published research findings indicating that there are numerous opportunities for marketers targeting those with a keen interest in such events, particularly as sports website users spend ten per cent more time online per week than the average internet user.

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