methodology is subject to all the problems faced by Alexa.com. These are detailed later in the
paper. It must be noted, however, that the ideas presented in this paper are equally applicable to
proprietary information from companies such as Comscore Networks. However, these
companies may not provide detailed data to managers. Third, managerial judgment is not
explicitly incorporated in the methodology, as outlined in this paper. However, the tacit
knowledge of those who are involved with front-line competition is vital in such a process.
Similarly, secondary informational sources (both online and offline) are very important.
Therefore, when conducting an online benchmarking exercise within a corporation, the results
from our methodology must be tempered by inputs from other sources (e.g. judgment of relevant
managers and salespeople, SEC filings, market share reports).
WHAT ALEXA.COM IS ALL ABOUT
Alexa.com encourages individuals to download a toolbar. The toolbar follows users as they
navigate through different websites and collects information on their browsing patterns, user’s IP
address, and a cookie that tracks the user’s ID, all of which is submitted to Alexa services. This
information is aggregated and made publicly available at www.alexa.com. The site identifies the
top 500 sites on the Web and provides information about traffic rank, reach and average number
of page views per visitor. A more comprehensive dataset is available for a price. Alexa provides
the following detailed information for every major web site-
Description: A short description of the nature of the site with a screenshot.
Overall traffic rank.