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Last Friday I wrote a post called “Are inbound links the best way to measure a blog’s influence?”, where I challenged a study published by Edelman and Technorati.

That study ranked the top blogs in the UK by influence, but rankings were determined solely by links from other blogs. My big issue is that the quantity of links doesn’t tell you very much, not when many blogs listed in Technorati are spam blogs. 

In any case, I don’t believe that PR professionals or media planners would subscribe to this link-based methodology to measure influence (or very much else for that matter).

So I promised a closer look at the top blogs in the UK, ranked by a more suitable metrics: unique users and page impressions.

After the jump, the results...

My feeling was that there were some major exceptions in the Edelman/Technorati study. And it turns out to be true, with the UK’s top three blogs not mentioned in the top ten of that study.

Some caveats first…

  • This list is not comprehensive, since a number of bloggers have yet to respond to my call for data (or I haven't been able to unearth any). Perhaps we can fill in the gaps over time. If I have missed any blogs out then please get in touch (chris@e-consultancy.com).
  • I have not included The Guardian’s commentisfree or any of its other blogs. I’d love to get some accurate data for these blogs, but so far I’ve drawn blanks.
  • Nor have I included any data from the BBC blogs, as stats are equally difficult to unearth and besides, it is the BBC, so we can assume Big Numbers.
  • I haven’t included those blogs operated by the few big media companies that have adopted blogs, such as Associated New Media and The Times. We can but wonder how they are getting on.
  • Finally, a disclaimer: I was one of the founders of hecklerspray. I'm not inflating the stats, I swear!

For the purposes of comparison, super-popular US blog BoingBoing attracts about 2.2m unique users per month and generates a whopping 24m page impressions.

Well done to all those bloggers who made it into our Top 15. Send word if you deserve to be included (based on unique users / page impressions).

The Top 15 UK Blogs...

1. Mashable.com  Mashable

750,000 unique users, page impressions are “in the millions” – data claimed from publisher

www.mashable.com

2. Hecklerspray.com hecklerspray

510,607 unique users and 750,123 page impressions

www.hecklerspray.com

3. Girl With A One Track Mind girlwithaonetrackmind

289,449 unique users

http://girlwithaonetrackmind.blogspot.com/

4. Tech Digest Tech Digest

At least 226,300 unique users and 341,000 page impressions

www.techdigest.tv

5. Shiny Shiny shinyshiny

At least 192,200 unique users and 372,000 page impressions

www.shinyshiny.tv

6. Iain Dale’s Diary Ian Dale's Diary

171,000 unique users

www.iaindale.blogspot.com/

7. Londonist Londonist

132,254 page impressions in the last 30 days

www.londonist.com/

8. Samizdata.net samizdata

113,429 unique users and 138,849 page impressions

www.samizdata.net/blog/

9. Random Reality Random Reality

102,071 unique users

http://randomreality.blogware.com/

10. The Bag Lady The Bag Lady

At least 86,800 unique users and 189,100 page impressions

www.thebaglady.tv/

11. Plasticbag.org plasticbag.org

86,778 unique users

www.plasticbag.org/

12. eureferendum.com EU Referendum

85,188 unique users and 129,921 page impressions

http://eureferendum.blogspot.com/

13. Chromasia.com Chromasia

60,609 unique users and 734,615 page impressions

www.chromasia.com/iblog/

14. Loic Le Meur Blog Loic Le Meur

60,000 unique users

www.loiclemeur.com/

15. Tim Worstall Tim Worstall

51,349 unique users

http://timworstall.typepad.com/

* Data is from September 2006, where known, and ranked according to unique users.

Notable exceptions and question marks (no data available, as yet, but would probably make the Top 15 list):

Gapingvoid
Belle du Jour
Coolest-gadgets.com

The Lair of the Crab of Ineffable Wisdom
Mind Hacks
Boris Johnson
Popjustice

The top ten UK blogs according to Edelman / Technorati (ranked by incoming links) :

Gapingvoid
The Layer of the Crab of Ineffable Wisdom (sic: Lair)
EU Referendum
Tech Digest
plasticbag.org
Samizdata.net
c h r o m a s i a
Londonist
Iain Dale’s Diary
Mind Hacks
Loic Le Meur Blog

The TechDigest top ten(“a mixture of the Edelman list, Technorati figures, information from internet data collection agency Hitwise and some qualitative data of our own”):

Gaping Void
Mashable
eureferendum.com
TechDigest
Shiny Shiny
coolest-gadgets.com
PlasticBag.org
samizdata.net
c h r o m a s i a
hecklerspray

Comments to chris@e-consultancy.com , or leave them below.

Chris Lake

Published 18 October, 2006 by Chris Lake

Chris Lake is CEO at EmpiricalProof, and former Director of Content at Econsultancy. Follow him on Twitter, Google+ or connect via Linkedin.

582 more posts from this author

Comments (2)

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Stephen Davies, Online Communications at 3W PR Limited

Hi,

If you read my initial post you’ll see that I didn’t claim that the data was full proof or 100% accurate. It was purely a means of looking at some influential/popular (according to Technorati) blogs in the UK blogosphere. I tried to create a UK version of what Technorati is already doing in other countries and languages. Something that can only be done manually due to multiple countries speaking the English language.

Again, if you read my post it says that we are taking the ‘wisdom of the crowds’ theory and asking for feedback and recommendations. Which I gratefully received both in the comments and via email and will be producing a new list shortly. But will be still open to recommendations and suggestions.

Just to go back to your mention of Mashable!, Hecklerspray and GWAOTM - take a look at the first comment from Pete Cashmore on my post. I didn’t know Mashable! was based out of Scotland. Something which Pete himself admitted he likes to keep quiet. However, it has since been added. And both the latter two are included… just not in the top 10. In fact, all bar one of your top 15 are in my list. The one which isn’t has been added so thanks. :-)

But as you admit your own list is not comprehensive so no doubt there’s another case for argument. I’m just glad I’ve generated some discussion around the UK blogosphere.

Couple of questions.

Is Loic Le Meur’s blog not French? Or at least would he not count his English written blog as US based?

What are your thoughts around including msm blogs? I.e. The Guardian’s Comment is Free which is written partly by professional journalists.

Also, any chance of changing the process to leave a comment on this blog. I.e. The sign up. Nightmare.

Cheers,

almost 10 years ago

Chris Lake

Chris Lake, CEO at Empirical Proof

Hi Stephen,

Thanks for your thoughts. The Technorati / Edelman study I was referring to was the one used by the FT (http://www.ft.com/blogreport), rather than your UK top 50. So I left Loic's blog in there for comparison reasons though in hindsight I should have removed it from the UK list.

Your Top 50 is based on the same methodology, i.e. links, as defined by Technorati. This would stand up if Technorati didn't include splogs, or any links generated via RSS. I hope Technorati invests some of its VC cash into this area.

If your study focused only on manual links then it would stand up a lot, lot better. That would really be 'wisdom of crowds' stuff. As is, it is heavily skewed by links *not* generated by humans.

That said, the methodology I've used isn't foolproof either - all analytics software differs, so it isn't exactly apples with apples. And you can be sure that I've missed a bunch of blogs out, and that new ones will emerge. Plus, the most uniques don't equal the most influential - compare Matt Cutts to some of the other SEO blogs; he gets less traffic but is one of the most influential SEOers in the world.

Discussion on UK blogs is great - long may it continue. More data please! Keep up the work in this area, it all helps...

PS - we're planning to change the comment process in the next site update, thanks for the pointer.

Cheers,

c.

almost 10 years ago

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