More on Useless Webmetrics/measurement companies.

The other day I ran accross Nielson netrattings paying  affiliates to find people to install their download.

Now if you want to show up ranked highly on nielson all you need to do is direct traffic to their download pages.   Nielson  claims that  45,000 -70,000 users in europe  have their software installed.  Extrapolating Internet usage of 700 million people who live in Europe based on a sample of 45k users is a bit of a reach.

Want to see all the sites spamming nielsons  download? 

Comscore and Nielson  are nearly identical in how they operate,  because different people distribute their  applications they are often out by a factor of 10 from each other when it comes to estimating traffic.   Every now and then they apply filters to try and lower the bias in the data.   As in this new york times article  Comscore changed its tracking system lately and dropped from  7.6 million unique visitors  to  2 million unique visitors. 

Now there are peoplethat claim pageviews are dieing and shouldn’t be used as a measurement.   I say it doesn’t matter,  these companies have a fraction the install base of alexa and their accuracy isn’t even close to that of alexa.   Why on earth are major corporations so stupid and paying these companies hundreds of thousands of dollars a year  for data that isn’t even close to reality?   Not only are these companies paying they are also basing their strategies and marketing plans on worthless data.

7 Responses to “More on Useless Webmetrics/measurement companies.”

  1. Paul Says:

    IMO, the companies need to be paying an outside firm to analyze their own server stats and traffic numbers. That’s as accurate as it’s going to get. There’s a goldmine of data in there that can be worth far more than anything collected by offsite metrics services. Although, they are useful if used to campare one site to another because not everyone would be willing to release their actual server stats.

    I think I just talked myself into a corner, LOL

  2. Markus Says:

    The majority of the data isn’t of interest to the site owner, its used for competive intelligence and bragging rights/media exposure as being the biggest.

  3. Useless Webmetrics/measurement companies. « Webdigity - Thoughts on SEO and Web development Says:

    […] Read more here  Posted by webdigity Filed in Uncategorized, web 2.0, SEO […]

  4. Ryan Says:

    Yeah, we constantly get way undercounted by ComScore. What do you think of Hitwise? Unfortunately they don’t have any tracking in Canada and I think privacy laws might complicate their expansion here.

  5. Naff’s Net » Sample Size vs. Sample Bias Says:

    […] In addition, all of the basic stats on these services can easily be gamed, introducing further bias. See Markus Frind’s post on how these services get gamed. It is easy to see that online, sample bias has a greater impact on data quality than differences in sample size. One final note on sample bias. It is ok if you are aware of and can quantify the bias (therefore removing it). This can be an incredibly complex process, and can easily result in imperfect results that are believed to be accurate. […]

  6. niche keywords help Says:

    This is great in terms of search engines. Nada appears to rag against them than this.Interestingly, this is exactly was forewarned about several years prior at the last blackhat about SEO in ’93!

  7. Says:

    Yep lots of sites spamming nielsons download.

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