Age distribution of Times of San Diego readers
Google Analytics data shows the age distribution of Times of San Diego readers in November.

Thanks to widely read election coverage, Times of San Diego drew 747,000 unique users in November — over three times the audience of 239,000 in the same month last year.

The independent local news website has seen dramatic growth since March amid the coronavirus pandemic and a partisan election year as San Diegans sought free, timely information.

The unique-user statistics from Google Analytics measure the number of different devices that accessed the Times of San Diego website at least once during November. This is roughly equal to the number of readers, though some devoted followers of the site may check the news on both a computer and a smartphone.

Users of the site were young, mobile and local according to the Google statistics.

Readers aged 18 to 34 accounted for 29% of reading sessions, followed by the 35 to 44 group at 18% and 45 to 54 at 19%. With a full two-thirds of readers under the age of 55, the website’s audience is considerably younger than is the case for traditional media like newspapers and local television.

Smartphones were used for 71% of reading sessions, followed by desktop and laptop computers for 26%, and tablets for 3%. The website uses responsive design techniques to automatically resize for different devices and screens.

Readers in the city of San Diego accounted for 31% of sessions, followed by readers elsewhere in San Diego County at 19% and those elsewhere in Southern California at 12%. The balance of readership was national and even international.

Times of San Diego’s staff of eight contributing editors and photographers publish an average of 25 articles daily on all aspects of life in San Diego County, from politics and crime to sports, the military, business and the arts.

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Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.