Alexa changes their rankings

Martin Brinkmann
Apr 17, 2008
Updated • Nov 13, 2013

I usually start my day by opening Thunderbird to check my emails and my website to check the comments that are awaiting moderation. I have installed some rank checkers in the Firefox status bar that display the Pagerank, Alexa rank and Compete rank of the active website and I realized that the Alexa rank for Ghacks got almost cut in half from 15500 to 9000 in one day. I first thought this was an error of some kind but it apparently was not.

I went to Alexa to check the ranking and they have an announcement on their website that they did change the algorithm that calculates their rankings. I never dreamed of making it into the first 10K websites in the world and although Alexa was never more than a nice to look at figure, it is still something one can be proud of. The new rankings are apparently taking additional sources into consideration which was always the main criticism that Alexa was facing.

The old system solely relied on the Alexa Toolbar and websites that had lots of webmasters as visitors, who predominantly had that toolbar installed, had a good Alexa ranking because of this even if their traffic level was way below that of other websites.

Did you experience a change in your Alexa rank if you are a webmaster and monitor it ?

Update: The Alexa rank, along with ranks from services like Compete, do not rely on first party data to compute the website rankings. That's a big issue that affects the service's accuracy. While it is nice to have a low Alexa ranking, it is nothing that one can be particularly proud of.

The rank still can act as an indicator of a website's popularity on the Internet, but it should never play a role when buying or selling websites.

Some companies use it on the other hand to get a rough estimation as to how popular a domain really is. It needs to be noted though that the Alexa rank can be easily faked. All you have to do is pay a couple of Dollars to users on sites such as Fiver who offer that service.

You will notice big ranking drops on Alexa once you hire them, but those are usually only temporarily unless you pay them regularly to improve the ranking of a site.

If you are in the business of buying websites, you need to take that fact into consideration as sellers may be inclined to pay five or ten Dollars to artificially increase the ranking of their site before they sell it.


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  1. ผลิตภัณฑ์เสริมอาหาร said on June 22, 2011 at 9:38 pm

    I was very pleased to visit your site; I was definitely a wonderful site. The post was worth reading. I enjoyed each bit of your post. Thanks for such excellent post.

  2. GuddaGudiya said on October 4, 2008 at 7:56 am

    After spending two years building my own website, I was very disappointed that my Alexa ranking was still higher than one million. in order to improve my Alexa rating, I spent about three weeks combing the web to find tips, secrets, and proven strategies for increasing my Alexa ranking. Unfortunately, many of the sites offering advice didn’t even have a high ranking themselves. Please advice!

  3. Chris said on June 20, 2008 at 10:29 pm

    My website went up in alexa rankings for about a month, and now it is on a steady decline, despite increased traffic from both alexa users with the toolbar installed, and other users without the toolbar installed. WTF? Any ideas?

  4. said on May 27, 2008 at 10:13 am

    In Jan 2008, my site ranking is ~100K. Now, it’s ~70K. Most of my visitors are not tech savy. They don’t use Alexa toolbar.

  5. Gireesh Sharma said on May 1, 2008 at 1:25 pm

    Even my website’s ranking dropped, though by couple of thousands only.

    Strangely, we are seeing a consistent increase in the number of unique visitors through, the changes in Alexa ranking are slightly dis-aligned.

    Wondering, how to make our visitors install Alexa Tool bar!!!


  6. Louis Liem said on April 25, 2008 at 7:51 am

    Congrats! If your rank gets better, we can assume that you have more people that aren’t so familiar with the Alexa toolbar and the ranking stuff visiting your site.
    Looking that you post articles on a awide variety of technology, I think you’ve hit your target market well :) .

    I posted some thoughts about the new Alexa, though. How if there’s no update, are there still any reasons to concern about your Alexa Rank?

    Drop by and share your thoughts if you find it interesting :)

  7. paul said on April 19, 2008 at 1:00 pm

    My website has been affected too, not that I have high ranking to begin with. I have written a blog post on the effect on my blog.

  8. OldSailor said on April 17, 2008 at 6:44 pm

    I agree. My Alexa ranking has changed. It has improved.

  9. aw said on April 17, 2008 at 4:58 pm

    Cong :)
    However, non English blogs are really suffering from Alexa.

    I got 10000+IP, and all that IP is not by Ads, all of that traffic is real.

    but I just got a very poor rank at about 10,000

  10. Roys said on April 17, 2008 at 10:13 am

    Changed for the worse for mine. Oh well, at least gHacks’ ranking has improved :)

  11. Life on Mars said on April 17, 2008 at 9:37 am

    Yeah, it changed, congratulations, I like your blog! Alexa reflects ur blog is so good!

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