Traffic Statistics As a webmaster or site owner, you are most likely tracking your
site traffic daily or weekly either with a log analyzing software
or through an online statistic service. If you are not doing this
already, I strongly recommend that you start. Running a site
without analyzing your traffic is like driving a car with your
eyes closed. These analyses give you valuable information about
your visitors, what they do on your site, which pages they visit
the most, where they come from, how long they stay, etc.
But analyzing your own traffic is only a part of the picture.
This only gives you information about YOUR site. Another
important piece of the puzzle is how your website is performing
in the big picture, in comparison with other websites.
Well known for its navigation toolbar, Alexa provides useful
website information to web surfers. It also tracks the internet
traffic through frequent sampling and ranks websites based on
their traffic. Alexa has recently added some very interesting
features to its existing Traffic Ranking tool. This article is a
review of these new features.
Alexa Traffic Ranking To find out how your site is ranking on the whole web, go to
http://www.alexa.com and enter your domain name. This will give
you the Traffic Ranking of your site, as computed by Alexa. This
ranking information is very useful. It gives you a good idea of
the popularity or visibility of your site compared to other websites.
You can use this information to find websites with similar traffic as
yours and exchange links with them, for example.
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Traffic Details Are you at the site? Now click on "See Traffic Details".
This is the feature Alexa has recently added. The first thing you
will notice is the "Daily Traffic Rank Trend" graph. This is a
great feature; it shows the history of the traffic ranking of
your site for the past six months (you can extend it to a year).
You can see if your site is growing or fading in popularity. You
can even compare your ranking with the ranking of another
website, e.g. your competitors. Below the graph, Alexa gives you
more detailed information about this traffic ranking: the Reach
and the Page Views.
The Reach The Reach is the portion of internet users who access your
website. Alexa expresses this number in "per million". For
example, Yahoo has a Reach of about 300,000 per million (or 30%),
giving them the top position in the Reach Ranking. This means
that on average, out of 100 random internet users, 30 of them
visit Yahoo. As you can see, it's not the main page that they
visit the most, but the email pages. You can see this in the
section "Where do people go", above the Reach section.
Page Views Page Views is the average number of unique pages viewed by unique
users each day. Alexa gives your site a Page Views Ranking based
on the total number of page views generated by your site. Here
again, Yahoo has the top position.
The Traffic Ranking I first mentioned above is calculated as the
geometric mean of the Reach and the Page Views, which is the
square root of their product.
Link Popularity The tool also gives you information about Link Popularity. This
is the number of websites found on the internet that link to your
site. Note that this number is currently not included in their
ranking formula, but my guess is that they will at some point,
along with other interesting traffic data like average time spent
per user on the website, etc.
Alexa Traffic Ranking is a great tool. It provides very valuable
information about websites. If you install the Alexa Toolbar in
your browser, this information will be displayed for each site
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