Re: Accurate user-based log file analysis

I have some reservation about replying to this message in open forum instead
of private e-mail.  However, since this topic and subsequent replies have
been circulated, it is probably appropriate to add to the thread here.

I am involved in logging web accesses and designing  an economic
model to support the infrastructure necessary for a specific service level.
Terry Myerson wrote in part:

On Mon, 17 Jul 1995, Terry Myerson wrote:

> This is true. For 95% of the sites out there, this is valuable. For HotWired,
> it might not be.
> >It sounds like you can count "sessions" within a 10% accuracy, but that's 
> >much different than "users".  One person visiting 20 times is 
> >largely indistinguishable from 20 people visiting once.
> >I think you're missing the point - there is very often (most often?) *no* 
> >connection between the physical location of a web visitor and the 
> >location listed on their Internic registration.  Heuristics can only go 
> >so far to assuage this.  And when comes on line, half the traffic 
> >could be coming from Redmond, Washington.  Perhaps the team at GVU who 
> >did the most recent internet survey could provide some analysis of the 
> >where-people-are-really-located vs. where-the-nic-says-they-are question.
> Most organizations are not IBM. Interse' has one office. Organic has one office.
> Most of our customers have one office. The more organizations that connect
> to your site, the more accurate this statistic will be. In a future release,
> we will deal with the MSN case you speak of.


I surmise you are trying to do a type of Nielson for the Web.  The intended 
target market for this product will be advertising buyers and Web site
owners to use for justifying their "Web rates" objectively.

If so, then without solving the problem Brian is referring to, "a lot of
accesses from Columbus, OH and Redmond, Wa."  your statistics are useless.
The primary uses for these statistics is to quantify retail advertising
and compare its effectiveness, if this is the right word, with ad buys on 
ESPN, Print ads, etc., as well as other Web sites.

These numbers have no value to sites who are using their Web site to 
distribute commercial information.  I.e. A catalog of left handed
smoke shifters.  A business will have other ways to measure effectiveness.
These methods are a salesforce, email, telephone etc.  When someone acceses
this info this person already has a predisposition to purchase my product.
I'm not going to waste my time measuring surfers. It is the same as sales
has always been. Don't waste your time talking to people who don't have a 
need for your product.

So...... If you can't provide this retail info, why would a retail web site
such as Hotwired buy your product?  Or, why would anyone spend $500 for your

Arley Carter
|| Technology is great, when it works! ||

Received on Tuesday, 18 July 1995 10:50:00 UTC