The Biggest Facebook Publishers of July 2014

We rank the biggest sites on Facebook in July 2014, with a detailed breakdown of the interactions achieved by the top 25 publishers. 

According to Spike, the total interactions gained by the top 10 sites on Facebook continue to grow and grow every month:


In July, seven sites managed to get over 10m combined interactions for content published during the month – the highest number yet, up from five in June.

The Huffington Post continue to make significant gains in their monthly totals. They passed the 50m barrier for the first time, thanks to a story on parenting (the most shared non-quiz of the month), and a listicle of 50 cities to visit.

There’s little change in the order of the top 10 sites. BuzzFeed and Fox News both saw slight drops in their totals. The biggest gains came from the Philippine news site ABS CBN, which attracted over 11.5m interactions last month, up from 8.6m in June. The Guardian also had a strong month, breaking the 10m mark for the first time (although this wasn’t enough to keep them in sixth spot).

The Guardian were responsible for one of the biggest news stories of the month on Facebook. ‘The World Stands Disgraced,’ on the Gaza – Israel conflict received over 250,000 Facebook interactions, earning it a spot in the top 100 Facebook stories of the month, a rare accomplishment for a straight news story. Interestingly, that was the same headline used in the print version of the Guardian on July 31.

The conflict proved to be one of the most shared news events on Facebook in recent times, with around five news stories making it into the top 100 most shared stories last month, a list normally the reserve of quizzes, lists and other evergreen content.

There were more changes further down the list. The Mirror, which we noted entering the top 25 in June, made further gains, to come in at 17th overall, their best performance yet. The Mirror’s digital-first strategy has been paying off, and we noted their tactics of four daily digital deadlines in our recent sharing guide. Their biggest stories of July were mainly sports related, such an an interactive poll which asked readers their pick of the best goalkeeper of the World Cup, which gained over 200,000 engagements on Facebook.

Upworthy dropped out of the top 25, while a new viral site, IFLScience, came in highly at number 11. IFLScience is a science-focussed site, whose biggest story of the month was a piece on the appearance of a ‘Super Moon‘. Other new arrivals in the top 25 were MTV and Bored Panda.

PlayBuzz Power On

Due to coverage issues that we now have resolved, we are not providing incomplete total figures for the newest top 10 entrant, PlayBuzz.

However, even without their monthly total, one thing is for sure – PlayBuzz are mastering the viral content game like few others. Their biggest story of July, ‘Can You Pass A US Citizenship Test?‘ racked up over 2.1m Facebook interactions, making it one of the most widely spread pieces of content ever posted on Facebook.

To put that in perspective, that’s almost half of the total monthly score accumulated by some sites further down the top 25 list.

Here are their top ten stories, which you can see record massive levels of engagement.

From this, we can see that PlayBuzz have quickly come to dominate the mega-viral stories on Facebook. Their top 10 stories alone each got well over 1m interactions each, landing them high up in the top ten based on 10 quizzes alone.

With even a grammar test scoring close to 2m interactions, it’s impossible to leave PlayBuzz out of the viral equation, especially given that they’re now ranked as a top 10 US mobile site. Their rise has been faster, more sustained and more dramatic than other viral names such as Upworthy and Viral Nova. Meanwhile, their lack of political coverage mean that they can appeal to an even wider audience than US viral political sites like the Independent Journal Review.

With all this in mind, we expect PlayBuzz to perform very strongly in August’s rankings.

Note: For reasons beyond our control, we are still unfortunately unable to provide full figures for ABC News. This is due to a Facebook scoring bug.

As ever, you can learn more about our methodology in this explainer.

How do we know all this?

This data relates only to content published from July 1 2014 – July 31 2014. We compiled our data using Spike, which tracks the content that people are sharing and engaging with in real time. It’s used by some of the world’s leading digital newsrooms, and there’s a free trial for new users.


Here are the top 25, ranked by total interactions:

‘Facebook Total’ = Likes (or Recommends), Comments and Shares combined.

NewsWhip gathers its data from Spike, our professional platform that monitors the social distribution of news. While we strive for complete coverage, sometimes we will miss some content for some publishers. If it looks to you like we’re missing something or have our numbers wrong, drop us a line.

Liam Corcoran

Liam Corcoran is Head of Communications at NewsWhip. His analysis and opinions on news, publishing and social media are regularly featured by the likes of AdWeek, BBC, Business Insider, Digiday, Huffington Post, Mashable and Wall St Journal. Email Liam via

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