I’ve written previous on how to get competitors Adwords spend using SpyFu, but sometimes you just want to know how much traffic a certain site is receiving, particularly if they are within your chosen sector – which can be useful if you are thinking about making a purchase of a domain, or if you are just plain nosy. Some of the following tools can help webmasters estimate website traffic levels, both by examining the blogosphere – (works well if they actually run a blog on their site), and from looking at inbound links dotted around the web.
This site looks at a couple of freely available metrics, namely Pagerank, Alexa Rank, Compete Rank, Quantcast, Google Backlinks, Yahoo Backlinks, Live Search Backlinks, Technorati Links, Delicious Bookmarks, and Bloglines Subscribes. All lumped together for simplicity. nice.
I couldn’t get any useful information out of this site for Webdistortion, but the more popular the site is that you are researching the more accurate its results. I’d take results with a pinch of salt though. Ranking.com claim to pull their information from browser behaviour.
Google Trends for Websites
With the recent inclusion of traffic data sharing across sites (for those webmasters who enable Benchmarking in Google Analytics), Google will only continue to get more useful in this area. Google Trends for Websites (a new feature of Google Trends) allows you to take a look at traffic trends for different websites, and also gives you a feel for the other websites in that chosen sector that are visited by your visitors. Which may possibly highlight linking partners if they aren’t directly competing with you.
MarketLeap allow you to test your chosen website against three others, which can be useful if you are directly gauging yourself against online competition. However this is more about link popularity. Which is one of the better ways to measure your website’s online success. Simply put, link popularity refers to the total number of links or “votes” that a search engine has found for your website, and that equates to more visitors, higher pagerank and overall greater website success.
AttentionMeter gives an Overview for Compete, Alexa and Quantcast data. I haven’t individually reviewed each one of these tools as they are well enough known in the Analytics world already. Both Quantcast and Compete are much more commercial tools and are mentioned later. Attentionmeter grabs the freely available data from each one of these sites, and correlates it nicely together via a few graphs. Well worth checking out.
Alexa, a company (owned by Amazon) has traditionally always received alot of flack about the inconsistency of its data, however when you are trying to gauge potential traffic from competition, and dont have access to their statistics package, it has always been worth checking. They also list other websites owned to many webmaster’s disgust.
Facebook Activity Monitor
With the social web being more and more relevant, it makes sense to keep an eye on your competitors social media activity. There’s a particular easy way to perform this using one of Facebook’s built in Widgets. Their activity monitor located here allows you to watch what your competitors are sharing, and indeed what their audience are finding interesting. Simply pass their domain rather your own into the widget. Similar searches can be achieved by using a number of the social media monitoring tools here.
Other useful bits.
A few other competitor analysis / market intelligence tools.
Our Review of SpyFU SpyFu Reviewed.
SEOMoz article on competitor analysis online:http://www.seomoz.org/article/search-blog-stats