The Best Way to Raise your Alexa Ranking. A Most Ingenious Paradox!

The Alexa Ranking theoretically determines how popular your website is, out of all the websites in the world. It does this by extrapolating from the behaviour of users who have the Alexa plug-in installed to their browsers. For instance, this humble stop along the internet superhighway is currently the 520,865th most popular by Alexa’s rating, though it fluctuates fairly wildly. That sounds pretty awful, but there are a heck of a lot of websites out there, so it actually ain’t bad. Because I am something of a numbers geek, I watch it leap about, seemingly independent of how many visitors I actually get, and have watched the ranking of some other sites I frequent, and I’ve reached a startling conclusion. Well, not literally startling. I just said that to make this sound more interesting. Alexa ratings aren’t exactly the sort of things that startle anyone, unless perhaps you are the sort of person that is shocked when a rather large yet unimportant number gets a little larger or smaller. I am not such a person, and I’ll wager neither are you.

It turns out that the best way to raise your Alexa ranking is simply to make a post telling people how to raise their Alexa ranking, and then thousands of people come in from the search engines to find out how. Because they all have the Alexa widget installed to raise their own page ranking, it also raises yours. (If you really want to go for broke, make a website all about SEO, Alexa, and Adsense. You’ll be in the top 10,000 before teatime.)

Now, some might suggest that this is a fatal flaw in how Alexa rankings are worked out. It means that the websites frequented most by people who care about such silly things as Alexa rating have inflated figures, rendering the ranking system mostly meaningless. In particular, websites dedicated to Search Engine Optimisation and such things frequently have ridiculously high rankings.

Some might even say that anyone who used such a method to raise their Alexa rank would be a terrible person. Or a very silly one, considering how little meaning the Alexa Rank actually has to 99.9% of web users. Possibly even both terrible AND silly. Some might also declare that it is good that I have warned of this danger, so that we might all be alert for such outrageous scampery.

Myself, I choose to break into a chorus of Gilbert and Sullivan’s “A Paradox”!

Let’s sing along! There are pirates in it too! Pirates make everything better.

Alright, it’s not really a paradox. It’s more an out of control positive feedback loop, but I don’t know any songs about that.

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