Is ranking the
same thing as visitors?
No. It does
however, tell you how sites compare against each other according
to rank. Considering the size of the Internet and
various other factors, a small difference in rank when
measuring in the hundreds of thousands or millions probably
isn't that big. The closer you get to the top of the
ranking however, the more that difference means.
if your site ranks at 1 million and your competitor ranks at
2 million, you probably are not that much ahead in actual
traffic. If however, your site ranks at 15,000 and
your competitor ranks at 100,000, there is probably an
advertising on a better ranked site be more effective?
necessarily. You have to know your audience and the
advertising has to be well placed. What are the
demographics of the audience of the site and how well do
they compare to those that buy your product?
To take it to
the extreme, advertising a new sugared soft-drink on a site
for teens will probably do far better than advertising it on
a site that is designed for diabetic seniors.
Advertising fishing gear on a sports site will do far better
than it will on a site that is dedicated to interior
decorating. Common sense is always required.
What factors may
Rankings are an
inaccurate measurement at best. In fact, short of monitoring
where every person in the world goes online, there are no
guarantees of who is doing exactly what. Rankings can only
be relied upon as indicators of performance.
Several factors may
skew rankings with Alexa such as the browser of choice.
Alexa cannot monitor AOL or Netscape usage, only Microsoft
Internet Explorer. Therefore, since consumer sites are
frequented by more AOL users that business sites do, the consumer
sites are probably ranked a bit worse than they really are.
For the greatest accuracy, you should probably compare
business sites with business sites and consumer sites with consumer
Alexa may have a few
less bells and whistles than the high dollar ranking companies,
but they claim millions of users. Most of the rest only work
with a few thousand. Statistically speaking, the larger the
number of total users (population sample), the more reliable the
results will be and the less likely that any single user or event
can skew the results.