Google v. Technorati (and Hitwise v. Comscore)

Metrics company Hitwise writes a sensational blog post showing the dramatic rise of Google Blog Search against competitors Technorati and Sphere. Their data is saying that this week, for the first time, Google Blogsearch surpassed Technorati in total visits.

Google Blog Search just passed 0.0025% of total internet traffic, according to Hitwise, v. 0.0023% for Technorati. The reason for the surge seems pretty straightforward: Google linked their Blog Search product to Google News in October, which had a immediate and significant impact on traffic. Google also added a Blog Search link in the “More” section on the Google main page. It was not enough to take the lead, but a recent Technorati decline in traffic put Blog Search on top.

It makes sense that the extra attention Google is giving BlogSearch would result in a spike in traffic, but we looked to Comscore for confirmation. What a surprise.

Comscore tells a much different story, and one that makes little sense given the facts. The most recent Comscore data (November) says Technorati had 3 million page views v. Google Blog Search’s 1 million. But Comscore also shows highly erratic Technorati data over the last twelve months, swinging from a high of 22 million page views in April 2006 to a low of 1 million in December 2005.

We’ve seen situations where Comscore showed erratic traffic swings before. In August Comscore showed a significant decline in traffic, when Hitwise said it was increasing. Yahoo showed disclosed some internal traffic stats and it turned out Comscore was dead wrong. In the case of Technorati v. Google, it looks to be wrong again.