Quantcast: You Don’t Know What You’ve Got Til It’s Gone

stats1I began using Sitemeter on my Blogger blog before WordPress.com introduced an in house stats program. I began using it here in 2006, still use it on both WordPress.com blogs, and won’t be letting it go any time soon because as Joni Mitchell sang:  you don’t know what you’ve got ’til it’s gone.

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Determining who the audience is for your particular blog content, where they can be found, and publishing what they want to read is important. Visitor tracking, traffic stats and demographic metrics provide only part of the picture that assist bloggers to:

  1. Know their audience and their interests.
  2. Determine who is visiting their site.
  3. Tailor their content to their audience.
  4. React quickly to  emerging trends.

In 2011 in  Blogging Metrics: Getting Quantified I published a short post on Quantcast metrics and let my readers know that all blogs hosted by WordPress.com were quantified.

WordPress Parent Company Automattic Looks at Global Reach Across Different Products – Combined traffic for Automattic‘s main web properties: WordPress.com, Polldaddy, IntenseDebate, and Gravatar includes direct traffic, mapped domains, and embeds.  By tracking visitor trends across WordPress.com, Polldaddy and Gravatar, parent network Automattic was able to track blog language, whether ads were displayed to a visitor and what post tags drew the most traffic.  — Read the full article WordPress findings in the User Diary!

I also shared that getting your blog quantified if it’s on a domain and being domain mapped by WordPress.com was not difficult as I had just done it for both of my domains. In Download your Quantcast Data I shared that I had signed up for the Quantcast monthly newsletter.  And, in Quantcast New Demographic Features I reported the update included interface design updates and new charts for Gender, Age, Ethnicity, Children in Household, Household Income, Education Level information.

From time to time since 2011 I have referred to Quantcast metrics and provided images of the data from this blog, particularly demographic data and mobile growth data in my posts. That display tanked on the Quantcast site at the end of January and on February 3rd, 2014 I learned those metrics would no longer be available. WordPress.com has plugged the plug on Quantcast.

matt's comment on quantcastt

Though I understand and accept that Matt is doing what he believes is best for WordPress.com, today I’m singing that tune that Joni Mitchell sang.

Why?

Because I’m a baby boomer ie. a silver surfer, who is resistant to change and Sunday is the day I examine my blog stats each week. So here I am missing the Quantcast Demographic, Web Traffic Frequency, Audience Also Likes, Time on Site, and the Web Traffic Sources, especially Mobile Web vs. Online metrics for my site.

From: 10 Surprising social media statistics that might make you rethink your social strategy

  • The fastest growing demographic on Twitter is the 55–64 year age bracket.
  • This demographic has grown 79% since 2012.
  • The 45–54 year age bracket is the fastest growing demographic on both Facebook and Google+.
  • For Facebook, this group has jumped 46%.
  • For Google+, 56%.

Here is an example of the Quantcast metrics I’m missing:
https://www.quantcast.com/huffingtonpost.com?country=US
Be sure to click all the active links so you can see how much data is there.

That said, my fingers are crossed in the hope that WordPress will deliver the metrics that I miss real soon. I can’t wait to see a comparable comprehensive blog metrics display to what I had from Quantcast in my  WordPress.com Dashboard. How about you? Are your fingers crossed too?

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44 thoughts on “Quantcast: You Don’t Know What You’ve Got Til It’s Gone

  1. OK, now, I’m mourning the loss of Quantcast. I logged back in to see what was happening, and all is blank white. Good to know in my family background white is the colour of death … :-( Thank you for writing, timethief!

      1. Hi! Quantcast had chockfull of information, as you mentioned. I’m not fond of GA holding an almost monopoly on what’s considered the “right” statistics as part of common conversation or business vernacular among bloggers and marketers, respectively. They’re *numbers*; surely, there must be other ways of getting those numbers! I’ve been looking at StatCounter, and they’re not bad. Thanks again for writing about this!

  2. Fingers crossed that those features are implemented in the wordpress.com stats. I’m hopeful. Really appreciate the tone of your post and comments. The online world seems full of people puffed up with hot air, red in the face and shouting about something. The calm, cool voice is far more thought- provoking.

  3. Like other bloggers who have commented here, I also was not even aware of Quantcast and what a valuable, detailed tool it would have been to utilize. I’m sorry I missed out. Being lucky enough to be freshly pressed is one way to reach a wide audience in a shorter amount of time. But, the chances of that seem to be on par with winning the lottery. I would have LOVED to have used a valuable tool such as Quantcast to help bring to light where my blogging strengths and weaknesses lie and to aid in growing my audience.

    I am just a few years shy of being able to call myself a boomer, but I am very much like you and do not adjust to change well. Here’s hoping that perhaps one day Quantcast, or something very similar, will be available to us.

    Interesting post. Thanks for posting the statistics.

  4. In my mind Hits Counter Tool is an Important thing also but not always Important,it’s become Important if you want an Advertiser Company know about benefit your blog for their Advertisment,and you want your visitors to your blog is aware your blog is a Nice Blog. I always thinking a Blog or a Personal Site is the Art Creation,i won’t a Counter Hit Tool made my Blog look ugly :) or broken Layout my Blog,then make my Blog is more Heavy. My Favorite Hits Counter Tool or Widget for Counter Hits is Minimalist and Unique.

  5. Too bad I never thought to download my Quantcast Data. Even though I really just have a sprinkling of viewers each day haha, as it’s just a personal journal blog, it would have been fun to see. Thanks for yet another interesting and informative post, timethief!

    1. Hi Halim,
      I don’t think it’s possible to grieve the discontinuation of what you didn’t know you lost. For what’s it’s worth I found publishing this post to be cathartic. Also know there is no such thing as just a personal journal as that is the niche where the crème de la crème of blogs are found. In the beginning most blogs were personal journals until those addicted to pursuit of the the almighty buck turned the blogosphere into a marketplace.

      1. That’s a great perspective to have, thanks for sharing it! It makes sense. And why like so many others I love reading the personal journals of others so much, because of the compelling stories, and the honesty and sincerity that are there.

  6. You go, girl! Loved your rant on our hippy-boomer age…. definitely couldn’t have said it better myself. Just had an early 20-something here for a visit and we touched on the bad press the hippies were given back in the day!:) Wish I could have referred to the statistics you just spouted.

    1. @Gunta,
      Yo! It’s good to hear from someone who identifies.

      I am trying to avoid getting cranked up again, lest I choose to take off the gloves and condemn the “straight” members of our generation who labeled my sub-culture group as “hippies” and play the labeling and name calling game too. ;)

      Truth be told those who labeled us that way in my day didn’t hold a candle to my kind when it came to intelligence levels. We were in the main honor students and altruists. They were in the main dullards ie. members of the brainwashed mainstream masses with their noses so far up the asses of political-corporate-religious machine that they were breathing methane.

      They failed to protest Viet Nam and support the conscientious objectors. They failed to take a stand against the spirit crushing paternalistic political-corporate-religious haters of everyone who was not white, straight and purportedly Christian ( <— never ever get me started on that one). They failed to stand for protection of wildlife and the environment, aquifers, oceans, air, first growth forests (<— without a forest canopy this planet will fry and desertification is already far advanced), etc. They allowed … well, you and I know that the list is far too long to post here.

      We have have done it! We so-called “hippies” who worked our way through college and university and then went back to the land overcame the establishment and changed the world. Now we pass the torch to those who know what the price of freedom and a healthy planet are.

  7. I’m not a huge fan of change either, but I didn’t know this had ever been an option. Oh, well, hopefully something equivalent will be available to us soon, and I can take advantage of it. Hope you’ve had a wonderful weekend, my friend.

    Hugs from Ecuador,
    Kathy

    1. Hi Kathy,
      I’m surprised how many did not know about Quantcast but I’m glad to know you share my hope for better metrics in the future.

      P.S. I had a working weekend but the next one I may be free to paint and sing and blog. :)

    1. Alexa is so limited compared to Quantcast metrics that I wouldn’t even consider it to be near to being described as an equivalent. Moroever, in the WordPress.com context it makes zero sense to spend money on getting any code from Alexa that WordPress.com will not embed into our blogs. Embedded metrics is what this is all about. Quantcast was embedded into our blogs.

        1. Here is an example of the metrics we lost >
          https://www.quantcast.com/huffingtonpost.com?country=US
          Be sure to click all the active links so you can see how much data is there.

          The metrics were free of charge and available to us all at the Quantcast site http://quantcast.com

          We could simply type in the URL in this syntax
          https://www.quantcast.com/wordpress.com?qcLocale=en_US

          Then we could change embedded to whatever our site URL was
          https://www.quantcast.com/thistimethisspace.com#!summary
          and locate the stats.

          And/or we could type in a another URL and get a comparison of our site’s metrics to those of another similar site.

          We could also get quantcast labs real-time profile example here > https://www.quantcast.com/labs/real-time/site/huffingtonpost.com

          1. Which forums? Not our WordPress.COM support forums because
            WordPress.COM free hosted blogs and self hosted WordPress.ORG software are not the same. http://en.support.wordpress.com/com-vs-org/

            At WordPress.COM we bloggers cannot embed JavaScript or anything else into our templates because only Staff have access to those files and only they can embed any code at all.

          2. May I please have a link to what you are reading? I think you must be referring to years ago because I can’t locate any recent threads that indicate what you say. The only 2 threads Quantcast threads in the WordPress.COM support forums in the last 10 months are these ones:
            http://en.forums.wordpress.com/topic/quantcast?replies=4
            http://en.forums.wordpress.com/topic/90-stats-divergence-in-last-two-days?replies=15#post-1635112

            The most recent WordPress.ORG support threads for Quantcast is this one and it is linked to a 3 year old thread here http://wordpress.org/support/topic/plugin-wordpresscom-stats-quantserve-code-in-stats-javascript?replies=18

      1. You can’t because you don’t have a WordPress.ORG install. You don’t have access to metadata like metatags and meta-description and you cannot even access those files on a free hosted WordPress.COM blog.

  8. I hold no hope nor am I going to waste time with crossed fingers. I never downloaded the Quantcast data so it is all gone now. Quantcast will not respond to questions.

    I don’t think Matt is telling the whole truth.

    I have friends that own and run commercial web sites, they LIKE standard stats, Google Analytics & Quantcast being the two most trusted. With standard stats they were able to shoot down lies by other web sites about traffic and visitors. Web site traffic I think has more lies than a bar has 20 minutes before closing time. When I had my own hosted web site, I had three different stats programs, all on the same server, no remote web links etc. and some days it was difficult to tell that they were on the same web site!!

    I think the way the stats was handled was very rude and arrogant.

    zxmgbstwomerndpwyb (other thoughts redacted by commenter)

    1. Hi there,
      SIGH

      Despite the challenges I face and overcome every day, I avoid ranting in my blogs by making the conscious choice to be positively focused whenever I feel bummed out.

      I practice the 50% – 50% principle just as many cancer survivors do by devoting 50% of my time to helping others. I pay it forward wherever and whenever I can and in that spirit I have answered the most basic and repetitive questions posted to the support forum now more than 7 years, where it’s an honor to assist along with you, the other Volunteers and our excellent WordPress.com Staff.

      Without doubt I love the WordPress.com community and I experience all the reward I will ever need when any blogger says thanks for the help, but today I’m bummed out Mike, and I’m sharing that truth.

      If there had been advance warning I too would have downloaded all my Quantcast metrics from 2011 – to January 30th, 2014. As it is now, I have lost them all just as you have and I am choosing to grieve that loss and then move on, as opposed to being angry, because being angry only harms me.

      Quoting myself from my private journal:

      Hope is not simply wishful thinking. Hope is ‘confident expectation in a change in direction’. Hope empowers us to be courageous enough to accept reality, even when one dislikes it, and especially when anger seems to be the more attractive choice.

      1. Not spending time with rants, I do owe Matt a reply in the thread I started that was closed while I was cooling off.

        I do have a bit of the Quantcast info but just for visitors, WordPress.com did not have visitor count with I moved here so I started keeping track of visitors on a spread sheet, that let me see the increase in visitors from one year to the next.

        But I checked then against WP.com and the numbers don’t match close enough to compare them to each other for growth. so more work to see changes.

      2. Thank you for sharing this quote from your private journal, anger management and victimhood are topics in my thoughts at the moment and I am often both challenged and enriched by your posts whether here on on your other blog x Jo

        1. Hi Joanna,
          I’m glad my quote above is one that you find value in. Anger along with greed and ignorance are the three poisons. I make the choice to acknowledge anger when it arises and then I let it go or I transform it. In this case I transformed my anger into grief by acknowledging the loss and then I allowed myself to grieve it, without snuffing out the ember of hope.

          Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned. – Buddha

  9. I thought I was the only one who resisted change. Can’t wait to tell my children that it’s a baby boomer flaw. Hope the forced change turns out to be a positive thing for you TT.

    1. It’s not a fault of this age demographic alone and in fact it can be considered as a necessity required to create balance. Resistance to change is universal among humans and being able to overcome that with flexibility and adaptability, were and are among the qualities that led to the success of our species.

      Ironically my generation has caused more sweeping world-wide changes than any other generation has done in contemporary times. We did not march to the tune of the political-corporate-religious machine that was and is destroying societies and the planet we all rely on for life.

      We stood for truth and freedom, as over and against the systemic spirit crushing hatred spewed by those who adhered to institutionalized religion, conventional thinking and politically backed societal assaults against women, gay people, the poor, the working class. We stood for peace and we still do.

      We are onside when it comes to techno innovation but we despise cheesy and purportedly ‘clever’ corporate marketing campaigns that our kids and grand-kids eat up like candy. Brands quiver when they encounter us online because we are not likely to be snowed by their snow-blowing machines and their operators. We prompted the delivery of no-name products to the marketplaces and spaces – no brands! Baby boomers AKA silver surfers:

      • Account for 70 percent of the U.S. net worth, controlling $9 trillion;
      • Inherited over $12 trillion from their parents — the largest wealth transfer in history;
      • Control 80 percent of the personal financial assets;
      • Represent 50 percent of U.S. discretionary spending;
      • Own about 50 percent of all credit cards.

      If you surmise that I sound apologetic about being a baby boomer or what some have called a hippie – think again and don’t don’t make me laugh. I’m not in the least apologetic about my generation and our accomplishments. I celebrate them because I am proud to be a baby boomer who made a difference.

      We rocked the world and we rock on! We have trained up our own replacements and generation X and Y have our blood in the veins, our attitudes in their heads, and our compassion in their hearts.

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        1. Dear Mary,
          I’m not in the least offended. You hit a nerve and I exploded with rhetoric which is not characteristic of introverts but what the heck? If I was near to developing writer’s block then that blew it … and I owe you a thank you. :)

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