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How Alexa ranking clouds your decision making?

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Alexa is popular because it's been there for a long time and is well referenced. Been there since 1996. Not accurate because it counts only those websites that have installed its toolbar. It’s …

Alexa is popular because it's been there for a long time and is well referenced. Been there since 1996. Not accurate because it counts only those websites that have installed its toolbar. It’s non-inclusive. Currently (end of 2013), there are nearly 500 million websites, but only a certain segment, like webmasters & techies, has installed the toolbar. Reduced credibility as they get data only from their toolbar. Biased, as only websites with Alexa Toolbar will rank at the top. It doesn't come pre-installed on any major browser.

When you finish reading this presentation you will be able give expert opinion on how Alexa ranking clouds decision making.

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  • 1. Your digital agency of choice How Alexa ranking clouds your decision making? 1
  • 2. Agenda  What is Alexa ranking? ------------------------------------------------------------------------------  Facts, figures & features ------------------------------------------------------------------------------  Popular not accurate ------------------------------------------------------------------------------  Statistics without context ------------------------------------------------------------------------------  When to consider Alexa ------------------------------------------------------------------------------  User reactions & conclusion ------------------------------------------------------------------------------  Recommendation 2
  • 3. The story of Alexa What is Alexa ranking? Alexa ranking provides information related to Internet traffic data such as websites and links. Whose idea was this? Alexa was founded by Brewster Kahle & Bruce Gilliat in 1996. What exactly does it do? Alexa collects traffic data on a daily basis from millions of users who have installed the Alexa Toolbar. Alexa uses a complex algorithm on three months’ worth of data to arrive at the ranking for each site. 3
  • 4. Facts, figures & features Tracking the traffic 1. Alexa monitors Internet traffic data and ranks your site globally. 2. As of 2013, Alexa has ranked over 30 million websites. 3. Wiki says over 8.5 million users visit Alexa monthly. 4. A free service, Alexa requires you to install their toolbar on your website. Alexa Toolbar is available for Chrome, Internet Explorer, Firefox, etc. 5. The Alexa Toolbar includes a popup blocker, search box, links to Amazon.com, Alexa homepage, and the Alexa ranking of the site the user is visiting. 6. It allows the user to rate the site and view links to relevant external sites. 7. Typically, many feel that if your blog isn’t ranked below 100,000 at Alexa, then your blog isn’t quite what it should be. Hence the pressure to rank in it. 4
  • 5. What’s the big deal? 1. Amazon did an Internet triple whammy in 1999 by acquiring 3 companies to widen its business reach in e-commerce, analytics and media. Alexa was one of them. 2. Alexa had about 5 billion documents in its index – about 100 terabytes of data, APIs, etc. 3. The big deal is that though you own the site and the content, you are using someone else’s infrastructure. And, who owns the customer data that you are accumulating, makes up for a billion dollar industry. 5
  • 6. Popular but not accurate Many reasons why everybody talks about Alexa ranking, but doesn’t find it useful 1. Popular because it's been there for a long time and is well referenced. 2. Been there since 1996. 3. Not accurate because it counts only those websites that have installed its toolbar. 4. It’s non-inclusive. Currently (end of 2013), there are nearly 500 million websites, but only a certain segment, like webmasters & techies, has installed the toolbar. 5. Reduced credibility as they get data only from their toolbar. Biased, as only websites with Alexa Toolbar will rank at the top. 6. It doesn't come pre-installed on any major browser. 7. The majority of the Internet-surfing public doesn't download add-ons. 8. Alexa performs differently in different browsers. In Google Chrome it shows you search analytics, sites linking in, wayback machine data, site loading time, etc. In Mozilla Firefox it shows only the page rank. 6
  • 7. Statistics without context • What’s the point in knowing that my site is ranked at 45K? I would rather know where my visitors are coming from so I can engage them better. • Data by demographics is more useful as it helps you to customize content. Google Analytics tells you real time where your visitors are coming from, what pages they are accessing and how long they are engaged on a particular page. 7
  • 8. Reactions from users around the world 1. Not exactly a merit-based ranking but a force fit and eventually not free. 2. Requires you to install their toolbar on your browser. 3. Using Content Delivery Network like CloudFlare affects ranking (For a site with upwards of 2,000 users a day, Alexa ranking dropped almost 1 million after implementing CloudFlare). 4. Ended up paying Alexa to certify metrics to get back to where we were. 5. Many users find it difficult to make sense of the ranking. • A typical reaction: Am I going up or down? 6. My ranking keeps getting better and my unique users keep going lower. 7. They say my articles are very popular in some town I have never heard of. 8
  • 9. When should you consider Alexa? If your aim is: • To attract advertisers If you want to attract more advertisers to your blog and earn more, then Alexa rank is crucial. If your blog has a good Alexa rank then chances of getting direct advertisements are more. But if you depend only on traditional advertising like AdSense and textual advertising, then you should not really bother about Alexa ranking. • To track competitor sites The feature “query popularity graphs” under high impact search is an excellent way of extracting a reliable keyword phrase list from competitors’ sites. It's MUCH better than Google's AdWords keyword competition data. 9
  • 10. Audience geography of Alexa visitors worldwide Country Percentage of visitors Rank in country United States 21.1% 1,579 China 11.3% 1,121 India 5.2% 2,941 Germany 4.3% 1,866 United Kingdom 3.6% 1,381 For more info & worldwide % for visitors please visit http://www.alexa.com/siteinfo/alexa.com 10
  • 11. Visitors database as on November 18, 2013 Analytics Tool Visitors Alexa 9,06,192 https://siteanalytics.compete.com/alexa.com/ Google Analytics 17,39,57,384 https://siteanalytics.compete.com/google.com/ Quantcast 1,49,576 https://siteanalytics.compete.com/quantcast.com/ Compete 85,890 https://siteanalytics.compete.com/compete.com/ Visitors 173,957,384 906,192 Alexa 149,576 Google Analytics 85,890 Quantcast Compete 11
  • 12. Alexa Toolbar in various browsers – Google Chrome 12
  • 13. Alexa Toolbar in various browsers – Mozilla Firefox 13
  • 14. Alexa Toolbar in various browsers – Internet Explorer 14
  • 15. Conclusion: It's time for clarity If a website has a good Alexa rank it doesn't mean that it has good traffic or is engaging. 1. It only means that it has a good number of visitors with Alexa Toolbar in their browsers. 2. Alexa gives a worldwide ranking, but a website may be particularly popular in certain countries, and less popular in others. 3. To get a fair idea of the exact number of visits, check other sites like Google Analytics, Compete.com and Quantcast 4. The Indexed Web contains at least 1.52 billion pages (Thursday, November 28, 2013). The Alexa website ranking is 1,484 and this has reduced by 320 in the last 3 months.(http://www.alexa.com/siteinfo/alexa.com) You cannot rely on Alexa ranking alone, but consider it in conjunction with others. According to a report from MDG Advertising: 1. 59 percent of consumers use Google every month to find a reputable local business. 2. 50 percent of all mobile searches are conducted in the hope of finding local results, and 61 percent of those searches result in a purchase. 15
  • 16. Recommendation based on our 11 years experience What do I need to do to increase my website visibility and traffic? 1. Focus on Organic ranking in Search Engines. 2. Define a customized Social Media Strategy for each channel such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube. 3. Create an engaging web and mobile user experience and focus on simplicity. 4. Users SCAN your page, not READ it. Keep your content crisp and to the point. 5. Create a responsive design so that users can access your website using their Smartphones and tablets. This increases your ranking with Search Engines. 6. Add Videos to your site and share your insights for FREE. Google gives higher ranking for videos. 7. Write Blogs and Thought Posts as often as possible. 8. Use A/B/N testing tools to improve your site. 9. For more expert insights, visit our Digital Maturity Index to measure and monitor where your brand stands in the digital business future. 16
  • 17. thank you for your time  www.peppersquare.com bangalore . dallas 17