SI.com Posts Records Traffic Thanks to LeBron James Exclusive

On the strength of Lee Jenkins’ exclusive with LeBron James for Time Inc.’s Sports Illustrated, SI.com accrued 6.1 million Unique Visitors (Omniture) on July 11 – the all-time best for the SI Digital portfolio and 42% higher than the 4.3MM UVs the site recorded on Jan. 29 (when the Seattle Seahawks’ Richard Sherman wrote a column for TheMMQB.com the day after the Seahawks’ NFC Championship victory over the San Francisco 49ers). Of the day’s 6.1mm UVs more than 50% came via mobile; 32% from social referrals.

This is the third time in the last 15 months that SI Digital has enjoyed a record-setting day. Ranking third on SI.com’s all-time traffic list is 3.7mm UVs on April 29, 2013, when Jason Collins wrote a first-person essay in which he announced that he was gay, becoming the first active openly gay athlete in the four major U.S. professional sports.

SI Now Powered by Ford moved up its start 30 minutes to 12:30 p.m. ET and was rebroadcast several times throughout the day on SI.com. SI Now powered by Ford is Sports Illustrated’s daily live talk show which celebrated its one-year anniversary on June 3, 2014. In addition, Time Inc./SI partner 120 sports, the recently launched all-sports digital video programming network, initiated special live coverage of the news shortly after the announcement with frequent reports throughout the day. 120 Sports’ daily live programming airs 8-10 a.m. ET then returns at 6:00 p.m. (ET) weekdays.