Widgets were all the rage last year. And the trend seems to be growing. Widgetbox, a widget creation and distribution platform, is reporting 500 million impressions worldwide in the past month, according to Quantcast. Widgetbox says that the vast majority of activity exists across hundreds of thousands of publishers who embed the widgets in blogs each month and through partners who integrate Widgetbox’s widget galleries.
That being said, Widgetbox is still behind other widget makers in the space, including competitor RockYou, which had 9.5 billion impressions in the past month, according to Quantcast. Clearspring also seems to have more of a reach than Widgetbox, but we don’t have the comparable Quantcast numbers. Clearspring’s widgets had 520 million unique visitors in April of 2009, according to comScore.
We also received these comScore numbers of uniques for April 2009 for most of the widget producing platforms:
Widgetbox, provides tools for both novice and advanced developers to create a variety of widgets, from simple embeddable RSS feed readers (called “blidgets”) to full social network applications for Facebook, Bebo, MySpace and others. Although Facebook represents only 1% of the widget maker’s traffic, Widgetbox says that they are specifically targeting Facebook as a growing priority, recently launching Facebook Connect integration for users and widgets (which can be published in the Facebook feed). Perhaps this is because of Facebook’s steady growth in the U.S. and its popularity abroad.
Last fall, Widgetbox launched a blog network. To be part of the network, a blog owner needs to embed one of the 29 channel-specific widgets created by Widgetbox. Each widget displays the same leaderboard content as the Widgetbox homepage, which allows users to browse through a network’s top blogs without having to frequently return to the Widgetbox site. The majority of Widgetbox’s impressions come from blogging platforms Blogger and WordPress, with a fair amount of traffic also coming from Bebo and MySpace.
While Widgetbox is seeing success as a startup, it is competing in a crowded space of other more popular widget makers, including Rockyou, Clearspring, and Slide.