Time for my first “what if…?”
What if we could centralize website stats?
Obviously, you will point me to Alexa and Netcraft and say it’s been done. But it hasn’t… not really. For clarity, I’ll expand on that question.
What if we could get all the web stats packages to output their information and allow an external web service to gather, organize, and compare that data.
Better? I have been talking to a developer friend of mine, and he absolutely loves the idea. We are going to try to make it happen. It is a big challenge, and this is what we need to do:
First, we have to convince the stats package developers to include a simple api for their collected data. And if it’s possible, convince them to output in the exact same way. This of course would be the biggest obstacle, and take some work. But it can be done with the right incentives.
If we are able to convince them, the next step is to create a site that collects and organizes the data. This is actually the easy part. Much like Alexa, it would display raw data and graphs for any url in the database. Graphical comparisons, top and fasting rising lists, and much more would be the features.
So what is the business model? Advertising and premium subscriptions. Premium browsing would be void of advertising and allow access to deeper information. It is a viable model, and should work.
And of course, it is a much better solution than Alexa. Instead of relying on each user to install a browser toolbar or extension, it relies on the webmaster. By working with this much smaller demographic that has the power, we should get much more data.
Whaddayathink? If anyone is interested in being involved, feel free to comment below. Criticism and suggestions are welcome as well.