Posts Tagged ‘alexa’

Compete.Com… Good but not always accurate

December 3rd, 2008

Compete, Alexa and Quantcast are the big three sites in terms of people trying to get a feel for your traffic. They all have varying degrees of accuracy.

In October 2008, Compete said we got 6,215 unique visitors which, um, no? So off. Quantcast had us at about 33,000. If you estimate just US based traffic (which Compete.Com might be doing), we still had 18,400 or so according to Quantcast. Google Analytics had us getting 34,690 unique visitors and 39,708 visitors during October 2008. Google Analytics said that 21,913 of those visits were from Americans. Both Google and Quantcast’s numbers make sense. (And both pull directly from our site.) Compete.Com just way off.

Even Alexa in terms of Rank fares better and more accurate when measured against Quantcast. It is off by about 40,000 compared to the 100,000+ that Compete.Com is off.

Compete continues to be off in other areas. Compete.Com says that the top five phrases driving traffic to Fan History are:

1. cincoflex
2. may chang
3. 373/111
4. sleeping with the enemy draco hermione
5. naomi novik astolat

Er. No. Google Analytics says those searches gave us the following hit totals for October 2008:

1. cincoflex – 3 visits
2. may chang – 0 visits
3. 373/111 – 0 visits
4. sleeping with the enemy draco hermione – 0 visits
5. naomi novik astolat – 1 visit

Google Analytics tells me that the top five search phrases leading to visits for October 2008 actually were:

1. dbz wiki – 220 visits
2. sakura lemon – 189 visits
3. naruto fanfiction – 131 visits
4. adult fanfiction - 120 visits
5. cassandra claire – 114 visits

Compete could mean total searches pulling up Fan History? Maybe? Really, that could be what they say when they talk about keywords driving traffic to our site, searches that people do which pull us up? Probably not but let’s compare to what Google Webmaster Tools says are the top searches pulling us up:

# % Query Position
1 11% dbz wiki 5
2 10% fandom history 2
3 9% bandflesh 7
4 8% fan history 2
5 8% fanhistory 2

Nope. Nothing on the list that Compete has and Webmaster stats make much more sense there.

Just not impressed with Compete’s October numbers as I’m waiting to see them update our November numbers.

Compete Referrer Analytics and fansites

September 24th, 2008

I have a love/hate relationship with Compete. I generally feel is understates the numbers to Fan History Wiki, especially when those numbers are compared to StatCounter, Google Analytics, Alexa and Quantcast. But they’re a measure that people look at so I and others still use them.

One of the major ways that Compete tracks how many users that visit a site is through their toolbar. I have that installed to help make my numbers a bit more accurate. If you’re a site aimed at web 2.0 people, folks who are knowledgeable about analytics, your audience is much more likely to have that installed and the picture that compete paints will likely be more accurate.

But woe! Most fansites don’t have an audience partial to that sort content and knowledge that would give them the incentive to install Compete’s toolbar. What this means is that you’re going to get undercounted for Compete. Most fan people just do not care OR they have privacy issues and do not want to share that information with a wider audience. Kind of sucks for those of us operating in that space… but those are the cards we’re dealt with our particular focus.

So Compete announced a tool on their blog: Compete Referrer Analytics. I was pretty excited about this. It could be a nice tool to point people at to learn more about Fan History with out having to dig into Google Analytics provided by us. But nope. Compete Referrer Analytics is not a tool that is likely to be useful for fansite maintainers who are interested in SEO and effectiveness of promotions/marketing/advertising “campaigns” they run in fandom. It comes back to that toolbar which isn’t wildly utilized by fanpeople.

Compete referrer analytics for Fan History for August 2008.

Fan History’s top referrer, according to Google Analytics is Google.   Next up is Yahoo.  Coming in third is LiveJournal. Ask.Com, AOL, SpaceBattles.Com, FanFiction.Net, AnimeNewsNetwork and JournalFen round off our top ten referrers for August 2008.

Yet Compete Referrer Analytics says Twitter (ranked 31) came in first, StatCounter (ranked 59) came in second and NetZero (ranked 286) came in third.  Way off.  Beyond way off.  Why are those three tops according to compete?  Because fan people aren’t using Compete.  It is picking up on my e-mails, my using of a tool to see what people are looking at on Fan History, and the Twitter click throughs from my SEO minded twitter follow list.

If you’re a fansite, this tool likely won’t be useful to you at all.  The existing tools you use are probably a lot better.

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