Compete Search Analytics review

Compete search Analytics went live last week and here’s my take on it:

1. Keyword Referrals

The keyword referral tool is supposed to give you an idea about which keywords or keyword phrases benefit certain domains. I tried to test it with the keyword “web analytics”, but it did not work, b/c there is a minimum requirement of 4 letters in each word. With the keyword “webanalytics” and broad match, I got the following results:

The keyword is pretty specific and I chose a small timeframe, so there are not many results. Still it is interesting to see, which website gets most of the traffic. I am not sure if the data is extremely accurate, but I got an idea of who are my “competitors” and who takes the most referrals from this specific keyword.

What’s also really nice about this tool is the export data functionality. Once the data is exported, I could use it for SEM/SEO or send them to the business development department, who now can try to make deals with the mentioned organizations/companies.

2. Site Referrals

The Site Referral tool helps you understand what keywords are driving traffic to specific websites or categories. In my test I used Below you only see 5 out of 117 results and the brand “clicktacks” and “clicktracks drives the traffic to the site.

This tool is great when you try to watch your competitors search strategy. The keyword Engagement column shows also, that the keyword “Clicktracks” drives the most engaging traffic. What could be improved are the long tail keywords (not shown in the screenshot, besides keyword 7). Keyword No.7 for example is “breastcancersite” and I am not sure why this shows up or what this has to do with Clicktracks.

Compete’s site referral tool also let’s you find keywords by category. There are about 50-100 categories that let you pull the most common keywords from (pretty much like the industry reports from Hitwise, but much cheaper). Especially for big portals or industry verticals this is a good way to double-check if certain keywords are missing.

3. Compare Sites

The Comparison tool helps you understand how your search referrals stack up against other sites. I ran the site against Marshall’s Webmetricsguru (which is much bigger). I kind of lost on the top 26 keywords, but for “reading tool” Webanaltyicsbook wins!

I guess the comparison tool works much better for similar businesses, which compete with the same keywords. In the case above it is just fun. Still I get a valuable insight on what drives Marshall’s blog traffic.


The neat features (data export /data re-sorting) packed into Competes Search Analytics tool makes it easy for anybody to use it.

Overall the tool is very valuable and compared to other Benchmarking tools the price is great. I also would like to see some extra functionalities for this tool.

Especially a reporting functionality, that can be individually scheduled would be awesome.

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September 17th, 2007

Compete, Alexa and Quantcast work great for me

After recent webanalytics bashing over at Venturebeat

I decided to add my 2 cents to the debate:

Third party webanalytic tools like Quantcast, Compete, Alexa.. will never deliver great accuracy as long as no tracking code is added to every single page.
Webanalytics tools like Google Analytics, Websidestory, Omniture… will also never be 100% accurate sources. Tor software, logfiles/Javascripts/Hybrid measurement, Cookie deletion, robots, spiders and many other things can delute the data.

So what can we do? Bash the young webanalytics industry and bait plenty of links or use the given tools as good as we can? I believe second option is better.

Third party tracking tools give you an idea about what is going on. If third-party numbers from Streetfire are off with one(!) of the tools…who really cares?

As an advertiser I have plenty of other options to measure the quality of their traffic.

The site owners also have the option to look at their own also not 100% accurate Google analytics numbers.
This heated debate reminds me of the early search engine days. Everybody complaint that they don’t get ranked on top, but nobody did optimize their site. Nowadays it is the “unreliable” webanalytics industry, and still people don’t try to improve their situation (e.g. display stats on the website, track the website with several free tools, compare and merge third-party numbers…). Next…

Posted in Webanalytics general | Trackback | 3 Comments »

February 23rd, 2007

Venturebeat “beats” webanalytics industry again

Matt Marshall at Venturebeat seems not to stop beating up the webanalytics industry. Last time he posted about the industry during the famous Digg vs. “fight” and I responded.

This time he again mentions that all big webanalytics solutions have “problems” and I agree with him that since his post in August not much has happened in terms of quality.

But what I don’t like about his posting is the bashing of new Alexa competitors. These competitors are only a few months in the market and nobody should expect, that Compete or Quantcast deliver accurate data for millions of websites. These companies just build a brand new system with high profile engineers as well as statistics professors and in my opinion a little patience can be expected. The Google search engine needed some time to be sophisticated as well, so why not give these companies time to come up with a better solution than Alexa currently provides.

I am still convinced that Alexa, Compete, Quantcast, Hitwise, Nielsen, Comscore and others will push the pace and will develop much better results over the next months and years.

Web measurement of the entire internet is not easy at all, but results are still often better than TV or Radio ratings, which scientists try to improve for decades.


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February 8th, 2007 vs. Alexa

It seems that gained some traction
and became a serious competitor to the Alexa tool. provides premium web metrics for each of the top one million web sites,
featuring precise traffic snapshots for free. More than 150,000 people were visiting
the site and 300,000 site snapshots so far. According to the CEO of Top10 Media Inc.
“…’s SnapShot is more reliable than other online data sources because it
uses the most thorough and unbiased methodology in the industry. Quite simply, Compete’s metrics are the best on the Web.”

So let’s see how Compete collects the data:

Read the rest of this entry »

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January 22nd, 2007