Alexa is a rating service owned by Amazon that tracks the Internet usage of people who download a toolbar. They provide that information in digestible formats that many website owners agonize over. I am not so sold they should.
Why to consider using Alexa Search Engines Results
- Alexa has access to a lot of data and a lot of users. Surely anything with those kinds of numbers has some inherent value. See what you can learn.
- Alexa could (possibly) drive traffic to your site. If you are looking to increase your site’s organic search performance, it may be worth the few minutes it takes to register there.
- They have links and tips on traffic building there. For example, they pull some information about your site from DMOZ, the free Internet directory. Organic Search Engine Optimization 101 tells you to submit your site there!
Strangely, that is not enough to make me very concerned about my Alexa ratings.
Top reasons not to lose sleep over Alexa
- Their numbers only reflect the number of people with the Alexa toolbar installed that visit your site. Pop quiz; What percentage of your audience has the Alexa toolbar installed. Exactly. Not enough, let’s try some real data. We know that Google gets multiple times the amount of views Yahoo! does. But Alexa doesn’t support that.
- Raw numbers of visitors are not important. You don’t care about visitors, you care about people buying what you are selling! When your site is large enough you begin to get worried about things like ‘data transmission rates’, or the amount of data you are sending out each time someone views your site. When you hit the limit your hosting plan allows you to send they cut you off or charge more! (One reason I think sites like Google and Craigslist have such minimalist interfaces.) You also get worried about massive database concurrency issues if your site is governed by a database.
One neat thing about Alexa is that they give you a free widget! Here’s mine…. (PS If you’ve read this far, please give me a ranking!) Let’s see what this tool can do!