Figures released this week by Red Sheriff show that one of New Zealand's last remaining dot com companies is one of the best performers in the New Zealand online industry.
Trade Me, the online auction site, ranks sixth in the survey of New Zealand-based websites, with 65,000 unique visitors last week.
However those 65,000 visitors stayed on the site for an average of 15 minutes each, generating over 17 million page impressions, making Trade Me one of the "stickier" websites around.
Trade Me managing director Nigel Stamford says while the site is fortunate in that it doesn't rely on advertising or sponsorship to get by, it is gratifying to see the results.
"That puts us second behind Hotmail and ahead of XtraMSN, which is interesting."
Stamford says that while the users are only spending an average of 25 seconds on each page, they are returning repeatedly during the day to follow changes to auctions and the like.
"It's mainly I'd say people browsing auctions, placing bids and checking back on auction progress. It's a highly dynamic site."
The site with the longest time spent online is PC World's Press F1 site - users stay on that site for an average of 15 minutes 50 seconds.
Stamford says Trade Me has grown dramatically in the last year and held 210,000 auctions in the last 30 days.
"This time last year we were only a quarter of the size we are now."
He says it's gratifying to see a small, online-only company footing it with the best of the real world publishers.
Advertising online should receive a shot in the arm from the new ratings scheme, says The Internet Bureau spokesman, John Stewart. The Internet Bureau is an agency that is involved in the planning and placement of online advertising for various advertising agencies and their clients.
"They're a conservative lot and they're quite conservative in some respects. They like to have a certain consistency in their figures so they can look back and compare who things are today with how they were six weeks ago."
Stewart says as the ratings scheme progresses and new services are added it will build up a valuable database of traffic patterns that will help advertisers not only place ads but compare online advertising with other media.
"It's giving us a much more complete view of the use of the internet. Information to date has been somewhat removed - this is a lot more tighter, with more detail."
Stewart says online advertisers have often been bombarded with numbers that are relatively meaningless and are difficult to compare, site to site. Now however, with advertisers eager to learn about overall audiences, the new numbers will be able to deliver what the advertisers want: detail.
"Other systems might have had only a ranking system based on various parameters - this is based on real figures. You can see the top ranked site might have 60,000 visitors in a week while the number two site only has 20,000 and the number three only a couple of hundred. You can place your ads more effectively knowing the real numbers."
Stewart expects to see more companies joining in the scheme in the coming months and Red Sheriff's vice president of South Asia, Philip Whinnen, says that's happening already.
"We're already getting calls and inquiries from the travel industry, from the financial industry, from the automotive industry. Even various government departments are interested."
- IDGNet was ranked at 13th place in the Top 20 Websites for the week from October 6 to 13, 2002, with 8865 unique visitors.