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It is better
to not be on
the web than
to be on and
not know why

John Sumser

is more
it seems.
John Gall


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October 11, 2002) - We're often surprised that even our closest readers don't use Alexa. We've harped on the utility of the web search, review, traffic ranking tool periodically over the past years. To underline, once again, installing the Alexa toolbar builds an incredible array of search functionality and competitive intelligence into your browser.

Recently, we published the collective set of job board traffic rankings that you could find simply by reading your toolbar. Alexa provides ready access to ownership information, website reviews (what are they saying about you) and tremendous capacity to understand audiences by looking at inbound links (websites that link to the one you're interested in) and related links (places visited by people who visit your site.

Given the fact that commercial external measurement services will never adequately deliver stats about your website, your Alexa ranking is a critical number to manage and understand.

For example,  Peopleclick is ranked 4,335 this week. That means that Peopleclick has significantly more traffic than NationJob which is ranked 5,542. NationJob is routinely ranked as a top 10 Job Board. Traffic rankings can be a sign of health, a way to validate vendor claims or a useful piece of information about a competitor.

If Boeing is ranked 4,473 and Airbus is 23, 388, who is getting better traffic to their employment website?

Recently, Alexa began offering insight into traffic over time. Here's the interbiznet one year graph

Compare it, for example, to the HR.com one year traffic performance or Electronic Recruiting Exchange.

When you visit the Alexa page that has information about the website you are interested in, there is a link labeled "trends" it shows a traffic graph for 3, 6 or 12 months depending on your preference. 

By understanding your competitor's history and position, you can arrive at a variety of decisions about next moves, strategy and so on. 

The amazing thing about the web is that it allows the quantification of variables that you never imagined could be quantified. By installing the Alexa toolbar, you get the opportunity to expand your thinking about what's measurable by including metrics in every one of your web transactions. The system's not perfect, as some readers will quickly point out. No measurement system ever is.

-John Sumser

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Materials written by John Sumser © TwoColorHat. All Rights Reserved.
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