From time to time, we get questions about web traffic analysis services, such as Alexa, Compete, Quantcast and Comscore. Are these accurate? And how do these services compare to a statistical resource, such as Webalizer?
Dennis Yu's analysis linked here, starts his critique with these words, “Alexa is the most well-known of the traffic measurement services, but also the least accurate…” Another website boldly proclaims, “Alexa sucks and here's why.”
For reasons that are professionally outlined in this article linked below, you will see why Alexa's allegedly flawed methodology is not useful for a specialized 'niche' industry, such as manufactured housing.
Note that the same independent report shows how Alexa can be "gamed." Note too that while we have referenced the studies linked above, you can find others online that come to similar conclusions.
Dennis Yu's analysis points out the weaknesses and relative strengths of each of the competing services, and he draws towards his conclusion by saying, “But the most important tool to use in grading your site is your own analytics…”
So now we turn to website statistical resources – such as Webalizer – which reside on your site's server.
Small Business Brief wrote that compared to even Google Analytics, "…when analyzing traffic, "Webalizer stats are more accurate," an insight we've reported previously on MHProNews.com.
It should be clear that Alexa, which depends on interpolation of data from a limited number of browsers that have their tool bar can't be as accurate as widely used Webalizer, which produces its data by residing in the server of the site being monitored.
Don't be confused or bamboozled by someone who waves Alexa (or similar web services) results in front of you!
Depending on whether your interest is in having good statistics is for your own site, or better understanding another operation's website, information gathered from a respected resource such as Webalizer are best.
We should note that when we build websites for other companies, associations, individuals or operations, we routinely install Webalizer, for the reasons previously noted.
Because manufactured housing – especially the B2B side – is such as specialized field and faces unique marketing challenges, you are often best served by an operation that both knows our industry well and has a sound understanding of website design, SEO, analytics, the proper use of social media, email marketing and more. Don't hesitate to call us for insights and comparisons. ##
(Image Credit: InsiteDesign, Wikicommons)
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