A Worthless Use of SERP Real Estate?

I can’t for the life of me figure out why I would want to see Alexa’s blue rating bar in my SERP results. While the usefulness (really, somewhat uselessness) of the Alexa rating has been beaten to death by SEO‘s and other internet marketers alike, I did keep it around on a relatively less frequented corner of my screen.

With the Alexa Sparky 1.3 update, there is no option provided to turn off this feature, and frankly that is irritating, given that other plugins such as SEO for Firefox, and SEO Quake let you control what shows up as additions to the SERPs.

The Solution

I’ll probably end up disabling the toolbar now since it really had little value to begin with. If I really need it, I will try to find the older version and go with that instead. Way to go Alexa in ticking off the webmaster community – the very people that drive most of your data by having the toolbar installed.

Is anyone with me then? Do these guys even bother to do a survey of if their users would like such a feature?

If you have a web service, here’s you can learn from Alexa’s mistakes:

  1. Your platform/plugin/extension is user driven – People don’t find your tools using search engines, they find them based on referrals from industry authorities, their friends, and through blogs. No tool is 100% bug free or ‘perfect’ so it’s important to manage problems as they crop up.
  2. Incorporate User Feedback – Early Adoptors are your biggest evangelists – It’s important to listen to them, give them beta and alpha products to test, and incorporate their feedback into bettering your offering.
  3. Close the Loop and Communicate – I double checked to see if Alexa had given a heads up to its users about the new update, and none can be found on the Alexa Blog. It’s important to communicate changes to an existing platform that users are accustomed to, giving them enough time to choose whether to upgrade or not. When I worked at Microsoft, we gave all resellers and partners due notice of the changes that Vista brought about, and despite the fact that many chose to adopt Windows XP for months to come, our partners were a happier bunch because we were forth right.

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Tagged with: Alexa, SEO for Firefox, SEO Quake, SERP, Windows XP

About Dev Basu

Canadian SEO & Inbound Marketer. Founder at @PoweredbySearch. Professor @SenecaSoME. I love startups, fast cars, & smart people. Helping brands with #DemandGen.