of the top 10 Nielsen//Net Ratings sites was 5.5 (axiomatically), the median rank of these sites on
Alexa.com was 6.5. Thus, overall, it would seem that the differences are not that large.
Importantly, from this limited analysis, we see that there is no systematic direction of bias- four
rank scores were higher on Nielsen//Net Ratings, five rank scores were higher on Alexa.com and
one was identical. However, it is possible for a site to be ranked very high on Nielsen//Net
Ratings and quite low on Alexa.com- see the example of Real.com in Table 1.
[Insert Table 1 About Here.]
THE B-COP METHODOLOGY
In this section, we identify the steps in applying B-COP-
Identification of the subject company:
B-COP is developed for a company that is interested in benchmarking its traffic.
Therefore, the first step is to identify the company whose perspective will be taken for the
analysis. Managers may consider their own company, key competitors, partners and distributors
as potential candidates. We will call this company the “subject site” from now.
Identification of ten competitors:
B-COP results in the identification of ten competitors. We have chosen the number ten to
provide a manageable list of competitors. As we will see soon, in some cases only a small subset
of the ten matters. To identify competitors, we identify the Alexa.com page for a company and
then study the related links (i.e., “people who visited this site also visited” links). These are
chosen as initial candidates for competitors. If some of the links represent sites that are not
relevant, we delete them. We also delete sites of the form http://auctions.yahoo.com to avoid
overstating of traffic. The list of sites that remain are labeled direct competitors.