For the last few months I have noticed a fairly substantial decline in my Alexa rating despite an upturn in traffic after the Christmas holidays. The traffic hasn’t been as high as during the PageRank updates in October 2007, but certainly higher than the average for most of last year, even factoring in some downturn in Stumbleupon traffic.
Quantcast provide real data because I am Quantified with their code embedded in every page
We can compare that data with Alexa
However the problem doesn’t manifest just on this blog, it seems to be fairly universal on blogs in the same or similar niches, and as far as I am aware, none of these blogs have had a significant decline in real traffic.
Here are the stats for the following blogs:-
I took these screenshots a couple of weeks ago, though there doesn’t seem to be any significant change within the last 2 weeks..
The trend seems to be downward for all these sites, though as I have already started, I don’t believe any of them have a real decline in traffic.
So what could cause this?
I initially thought that it might be due to problems with the Search Status plugin for firefox, or the way Alexa support 3rd party Applications but the developers stated they hadn’t noticed any problems. It is true that occasionally I have problems with Alexa data displaying in Search Status, but currently I attribute this to a possible timeout of my poor internet connection (yeah it is still bad)
Does anyone else get a grey bar for Alexa a lot of the time?
It could also be some kind of manual adjustment, either for specific niches, or for data that comes from 3rd party applicaions which are predominantly used by webmasters. This would make a lot of sense because it is widely known that Alexa scores for various online marketing sites are much higher than their real traffic figures, and Firefox is generally popular among web developers.
Has anyone been monitoring similar data in other niches and noticed what may be a modification of the data? Examples of quantified sites would be very welcome to compare, especially if there are other sites in the same niche that are also quantified.
Oh and please, I am just going to flag as spam any comment questioning whether Alexa data has any value, and that might cause all previous comments to also be removed. Spam Karma has a great roll-back feature.
Did you notice that Alexa are again reporting reach using “millions” in the first Alexa screenshot?