Quantcast.com – Better than Hitwise, Alexa, and Compete.com Combined?

Quantcast Logo

Quantcast.com is a new “Open Internet Ratings Service” that I learned about from Paul Allen. It’s a free service that looks nice, runs quick, seems to have a good amount of data, but with questionable accuracy. Quantcast says this about their service:

Quantcast is the world’s first open internet ratings service. Advertisers can find reports on the audiences of millions of web sites. Publishers can ensure their sites are represented accurately by tagging them for direct measurement. The service is free to everyone.

Their FAQ tells more about them, how they get their data (affiliations with partners, who include advertisers, publishers, ISPs and advertising networks), etc.

From a query, like techcrunch.com, you can view demographics (gender, age, household income, ethnicity, head of household education, and children in household), audience keywords, common audience (other sites these visitors go to, and “siteographics” which define as:

Quantcast’s Siteographics™ show other sites an audience frequents, which can reveal lifestyle and behavioral traits. The Siteographics section of a site’s profile shows other sites that the audience is likely to visit, and the index indicates how likely, where 100 is neutral. For example, an index of 300 would mean visitors are three times more likely to visit the correlated site than by random chance.

Quantcast.com also shows an estimate on unique visitors, and what kind of visitors they are (passers-by, regulars, and addicts). I would guess there are a lot more regulars and addicts than is being counted here.

Like alexa and compete.com you can compare estimated traffic to websites. I created a comparison between Hitwise, Alexa, Compete.com, and Quantcast, and results are interesting. It seems Quantcast.com is in quite a growth stage, Hitwise doesn’t show up on Quantcast’s graph, Alexa is pretty constant, and Compete.com had a spike at the end of last year. Interestingly the data for all of them except Quantcast is missing for the last month or so.

Quantcast Compare Traffic

I ran the same comparison on Alexa (note, you can’t compare anything with alexa.com and they don’t even rank themselves…interesting):

Quantcast Sparse Data

Quantcast seems to have a lot of interesting features, all for free, and features that seem to combine features from all of the others. Is it better? Or are the estimates not very good? With a lot of SEO blogs, even popular ones (SEOmoz, TopRankBlog, MarketingPilgrim, SEOBook), Quantcast says “We have sparse data about [domain name]…”.

This will be an interesting tool to play with more and compare with the others. If you have some interesting comparisons, please comment below or blog them yourself!


  • Tom says:

    Where did that first graph come from? Quantcast? I use all these services and Quantcast the least. Their data never comes close to my clients internal numbers and they provide no data or methodology overviews. I actually found an interesting comparision of data and methodologies on Compete’s site and they have Quancast labeled as “undisclosed” across every field.

    So why do I ever use Quantcast???? It looks nice and the other sites of interest profiles are interesting.

  • Tom

    As I use Quantcast more I see how limited it is. The interface is really nice, but the data is not there yet. It will be interesting to see who really comes out on top.

  • Mark says:

    Hi Michael —

    We are very interested in providing the best data possible.

    As an open and colaborative platform we allow for direct measurement — Of course direct measurement (through the Quantified Publisher program) is the most accurate way to gather, present and share data about sites.

    Every day site Quantified owners write me to say how delighted they are to finally have really good data they can provide to colleagues, advertisers, investors, etc.

    As a colaborative platform, I am personally very interested in hearing what else you would like to see from service. We are building it with you, and other publishers in mind.

    Anyone should feel free to contact me — I am “Mark” at the above mentioned company.

    My best,

    Mark Schulze

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