Traffic on many Web sites dropped off last month after Christmas, but several sites offering prizes and sweepstakes showed sharp increases in monthly usage, according to a survey by PC Data Online.

A Super Bowl promotion campaign boosted traffic at the Publisher's Clearing House Web site,, by more than 1,000 percent. (The sweepstakes company has been sued by 25 states alleging that it engages in deceptive advertising to encourage direct-mail entrants to believe they have a better chance of winning if they purchase magazine subscriptions. The company has denied the allegations.)

Also gaining visitors in December were sweepstakes sites, which saw an increase of 32 percent,, where traffic rose 23 percent, and Promogames, which rose 20 percent., a Herndon-based direct marketer on the Web that offers members e-mail reminders and tips about events such as birthdays, had the second-largest jump in traffic in December--46 percent over the previous month.

Also showing strong monthly gains were, which allows users to order stationery, customized T-shirts and other items;, an advertising site; Blue Mountain Arts, a provider of online greeting cards; and, a chat site. Gaming site rounded out the top 10.


The post-holiday blues didn't affect every Web site, especially sweepstakes maven Publishers Clearing House.

Rank/Site: 1.

Dec. visitors (in millions): 5.4

Nov. visitors (in millions): 0.5

Percentage growth: 1,073%

Rank/Site: 2.

Dec. visitors (in millions): 3.5

Nov. visitors (in millions): 2.4

Percentage growth: 46%

Rank/Site: 3.

Dec. visitors (in millions): 3.2

Nov. visitors (in millions): 2.2

Percentage growth: 42%

Rank/Site: 4.

Dec. visitors (in millions): 5.3

Nov. visitors (in millions): 4.0

Percentage growth: 33%

Rank/Site: 5.

Dec. visitors (in millions): 8.2

Nov. visitors (in millions): 6.2

Percentage growth: 32%

Rank/Site: 6. Blue Mountain Arts

Dec. visitors (in millions): 14.8

Nov. visitors (in millions): 11.3

Percentage growth: 31%

Rank/Site: 7.

Dec. visitors (in millions): 3.9

Nov. visitors (in millions): 3.2

Percentage growth: 23%

Rank/Site: 8.

Dec. visitors (in millions): 3.2

Nov. visitors (in millions): 2.6

Percentage growth: 21%

Rank/Site: 9. Talk City

Dec. visitors (in millions): 5.3

Nov. visitors (in millions): 4.4

Percentage growth: 20%

Rank/Site: 10.

Dec. visitors (in millions): 3.3

Nov. visitors (in millions): 2.7

Percentage growth: 20%

Note: Visitors means each user on a site is counted once. regardless of how many times the individual visits the site.