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About WebSearch Traffic Ranking

Traffic rank is determined by analyzing browser reports for millions of WebSearch Toolbar users. Obtained reports are sorted, tabulated, and analyzed to determine a given website’s traffic rank. This process renders the results reported in the WebSearch Traffic Ranking screen.

How is Traffic Rank determined?
Website traffic rank is based on traffic data derived from the WebSearch Toolbar network of subscribers. It is calculated by the total amount of users (scope) and the amount of original page views.

What are original page views?
Original page views measure the instances in which a webpage is first encountered by a WebSearch Toolbar User. Proceeding page views of the same page in the same context, by the same user, during the same session; are counted only once towards the page views total.

What is scope?
Scope measures the number of Internet users visiting a particular site. The WebSearch Toolbar measures scope as number of users per million. As such, the numerical ranking reflects the percentage of users, per million, visiting a particular site.

Ex: example.com has a scope of 7% - meaning an average of 70,000 (per million) users visit this site.

Traffic data is based on the Internet browsing behavior of WebSearch Toolbar users, which may not be a representative sample of the global Internet population. Known biases include (but are likely not limited to) the following:
  • The WebSearch Toolbar works only with the Internet Explorer browser. Sites frequented mainly by users of other browsers will be undercounted. For example, the AOL/Netscape browser is not supported, which means that we collects little data from AOL users, and our traffic to aol.com is likely lower than it would be for a more representative sample.
  • The WebSearch Toolbar works only on Windows operating systems. Although a large majority of the Internet population currently uses Windows, traffic to any sites which are disproportionately visited by users of other operating systems will be undercounted.
  • In some cases traffic data may also be adversely affected by our "site" definitions. With tens of millions of hosts on the Internet, our automated procedures for determining which hosts are serving the "same" content may be incorrect and/or out-of-date. Similarly, the determinations of domains and home pages may not always be accurate. When these determinations change (as they do periodically), there may be sudden artificial changes in our traffic rankings for some sites as a consequence.
  • The WebSearch Toolbar turns itself off on secure pages (https:) for privacy/security reasons. Sites with more secure page views will be under-represented in our traffic stats.

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