Google and MSN Live Search also contain this functionality. It can be accessed in both using the same
syntax, but at the time of writing they don’t provide very accurate information.
Google Trends is a tool from Google that provides the statistics regarding the volume of keyword searches
over various time periods. Data are available going back to 2004.
The Google Trends service lets you partition data by language and region and plot multiple key phrases
on one graph. This can be used to track and anticipate traffic for a particular period (see Figure 2-5). The
service is available at
Figure 2-5 shows the Google Trends report for “SEO” as of 8/30/2006.
Alexa Rankings attempt to rank all web sites globally by quantity of traffic. The traffic rankings use sta-
tistics based on data gathered from the Alexa Toolbar and other tools connected to the service. The serv-
ice is provided by Alexa Internet, a subsidiary of Amazon Incorporated. Yahoo! is ranked number one at
the time of this book’s writing.
The statistics aren’t generally accepted as accurate, and many speculate that the rankings are subject to
manipulation and skewing as a result of a limited dataset. In general, the statistics are more accurate with
higher ranking sites (those with
numerical rankings). Despite these caveats, Alexa Rankings can be
used to get a handle on increasing traffic trends, and they are generally fun to watch.
Figure 2-6 shows the Alexa Rankings page for
, at the date of November
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