Anglican Blogs – How do they stack up – Part the Second
Did you get excited about the table which showed Technorati rankings? Technorati ranks on the basis of links to sites, whereas Alexa can give you a much more accurate picture of who goes where. The Alexa traffic rank lets us know on a day to day basis who is reading what. The lower the value, the further up the table a site gets.
And this gives a different picture to the previous table….
|Blog||Alexa Traffic Rank
|Stand Firm in Faith||194,238|
|Episcopal Church Official Site||197,222|
|Titus One Nine||299,087|
|Ruth Gledhill – Articles of Faith||321,192|
|Perpetua of Carthage||370,959|
|MidWest Conservative Journal||564,978|
|Bishop Alan Wilson||814,519|
|An Exercise in the Fundamentals of Orthodoxy||1,049,767|
|Northern Plains Anglicans||1,057,283|
|The Ugley Vicar||3,073,343|
Wow! What a difference. Almost all the top sites in terms of where people are going (as opposed to who is being linked to) are conservative. Thinking Anglicans for example is four times further down the list than Stand Firm.
Looking at the two lists together, what they are indicating is that the liberal sites tend to get lots of people eagerly linking to them, but they don’t generate close to the traffic that the conservative sites do. Why do we think that is?
I think this is a better list, because it shows where people are actually going, not just where they want people to go. What do you think? Any more names to add? I’ll pop any on the list that have an Alexa ranking less than 10 million.
As an egotistical aside, there are now five sites on the list that are written from an explicitly gay or post-gay perspective. Guess who comes top of those? Guess how far down the others come…
While it’s certainly nice to see so many conservative blogs “at the top” — as a person who engaged in Internet marketing full time for two years, and had that as a part of my job description for many many years in marketing at a couple of other corporations, I have to say that I basically ignore Alexa’s “rankings,” either good or bad.
Alexa data is gained from sites that have actually installed the Alexa toolbar — and the number of sites is simply too small, not to mention that measuring the traffic of a site based solely on a sample of websites willing to install the Alexa toolbar is automatically biasing in itself.
Some Internet marketing gurus claim that Alexa is good merely *comparatively* — I’ll link an article that makes that claim — but still, from my perspective Alexa rankings are utterly irrelevant because one can simply not depend on the accuracy.
For all we know, judging by Alexa’s accuracy, Thinking Anglicans may be the top-trafficked blog in this entire list. StandFirm may be just under Fulcrum and well under Anglican Mainstream.
We just don’t know, from Alexa rankings themselves, since Alexa is notoriously ill-trusted.
Here’s a quick note about Alexa from somebody who likes the comparative uses — but I just can’t go that far. Note too that he admits that Alexa really is purposeless for “lower traffic level” sites — and note his definition of “lower traffic.” ; > )
Of course, the debate has been ongoing for years:
Some corporate Internet marketers may choose to believe Alexa rankings — although I suspect even those who do in the corporate world are extremely cautious and limited about their use in making Internet marketing decisions. I simply don’t count Alexa rankings in any of my decisions regarding Internet marketing nor do I use them to establish patterns or trends.
I mean — again, I’d love to imagine that SF is the “top-trafficked site” based on Alexa, and I suppose it could be. Or not. But it would be foolish, I think, for people to make changes in any way, based on what Alexa says about their traffic.
StandFirm, at least, doesn’t take those *particular* ranking tools seriously, although we do have other metrics we use to guage how we are doing in the blogging world that satisfy us, help us see where we are in relations to other blogs, and help us in how we make our decisions.
This is so fascinating as well – thank you for posting this.
Aha. But you underestimate the power of the Liberal Conspiracy. Your Alexa figures merely show the huge numbers of us liberals coming to those naughty Conservative sites to check out what we should be getting upset about…
As opposed to the well behaved conservatives who couldn’t possibly be seen going anywhere near liberal sites? I think we may have a workable hypothesis…
I beg to differ with Sarah on one point: Alexa rankings are not based on “sitesÂ that have actually installed the Alexa toolbar”, but on usersÂ who have installed that toolbar in their browsers. So what this table shows, fairly directly, is that conservatives make more use of the two browsers which Alexa supports (Firefox and IE Explorer) than do liberals.
RE: “I beg to differ with Sarah on one point: Alexa rankings are not based on â€œsites that have actually installed the Alexa toolbarâ€, but on users who have installed that toolbar in their browsers.”
You’re right — I should have said users.
But does it really show that conservatives make more use of Firefox and IE Explorer? Or just that conservative Anglicans who use Firefox and IE Explorer are more likely to install the Alexa toolbar?
What we need is for all the liberal Anglicans to rush out and download Firefox or IE Explorer and then install the Alexa toolbar. It could be another Liberal Conspiracy!!
Oh no. I use Firefox. Does that mean that underneath this wooly liberal exterior there’s a closet conservative screaming to get out…?
Shreds and Patches at the above address.
My Alexa rank isÂ 370,959.
How about including me on the list?
as a person who provides internet marketing services for a living, I agree with the above comment re: Alexa.Â The important metrics are visitors and more importantly unique visitors.Â On the politics of this, the right is considerably more engaged about this so I’m not surprised if those sites get more traffic.Â Remember many of the moderates (and some but fewer liberals) are not active internet users, as their demographic (read: they’re older) does not match with blog participation or even just reading.
These are three of my favorite blogs that aren’t listed.Â They don’t use the Alexa traffic tool.Â Now that I think of it, there are several other excellent Anglican blogsÂ that I’d like to see ranked, but they aren’t listed here either.Â
Peter, if you’re considering Anglican blogs (or at least, blogs by Anglicans) you ought to be aware of Peter Kirk’s Gentle Wisdom. This Â has a Technorati authority of 68, ranking it above BabyBlue Cafe on that score, and on Alexa ranks 1,728,848. That would put it just below the ‘Covenant’ site in the list above. Its stance is probably best summarized as Open Evangelical.
Sydneyanglicans.net ranks at 540,455 in alexa. Not bad for a diocesan website.
I appreciate Sarah urging caution about Alexa rankings and sharing the links with us. But I do see that comparative ranking within an industry is appropriate.Â Eric Enge wrote:
“However, I still use Alexa as a tool. It was a blog post by Avinash Kaushik that taught me how to still use it as an effective tool. Quite simply, use the Alexa feature that shows comparative traffic levels to compare your site’s traffic to that of your competitors.
Because your competitors are in the same business as you are, the bias problem no longer is a factor to worry about (because the bias will affect all the compares sites equally). For most businesses this will provide a quick way to compare the relative web site traffic levels in their industry. So the accuracy problems are real, but there is still a way to use the tool to extract useful information.”
I think that makes Peter+’s comparative ranking table an appropriate use of Alexa.
Would you please consider including my blog, Perpetua of Carthage?
My Alexa traffic ranking is 370,959.
Following your “analysis”, the Anglican site Liturgy (Alexa 369,164) has moved from your first (Technorati authority) table at ninth, to your ranking it here as seventh! Your interpretation would then have Liturgy alongside the Episcopal Church official site (link here not working), the Church Times, and Ruth Gledhill as top sites and “conservative”.
Hi again Peter
I see, with the addition of Perpetua of Carthage that your table is a live document.
I hope, hence, that you might include “Liturgy” in both your tables.