Print audit body launches web push

Australia’s print audit organisation has launched its long awaited web auditing service.  

The Audit Bureaux of Australia – which covers Australia’s two print auditors  the Audit Bureau of Circulation and the Circulations Audit Board – launched the new service at an industry event at the Australian Museum.

The ABA Web Audit Service is being run by Nielsen Online, which places tags from its Market Intelligence system on websites to verify publishers’ traffic claims.

And although the service is being initally aimed at the ABA’s traditional print owners who have launched online ventures, CEO Gordon Towell said there had already been strong interest from online-only publishers.

The service will cover five metrics:

  • Unique browsers
  • Page impressions
  • Sessions
  • Frequency
  • Duration

And the ABA claims its price structure is such that even smaller site owners would have no excuse not to sign up.

Publishers with less than 150,000 page impressions per month will be charged a fee of $95 per month to use the service, which would see the data included in Nielsen’s Market Intelligence service, and also give them access to the website ranking system data themselves.

Towell said: “We are faced with a need for transparency and accuracy. That’s not to say that everybody is manipulating the numbers, but it would be fair to say there are a number of different ways to interpret them. There’s a strong need to get a interpretation of that data.”

He added: “We think it is very affordable and has taken away any reason for any publisher  however small not to participate.”

His comments were backed by Interactive Advertising Bureau CEO Paul Fisher who said: “We don’t have a shortage of data – we are swimming in data. But we all need to trade in a common currency.”

google-analytics-mumbrella-2009During the question and answer session Towell was quizzed why the bureau was only working with Nielsen Online. he said: “We did talk to other potential partners and some simply did not want to work with us. The best example of that was Google – they have a very different view of this discussion and on the industry going forward.”

Potentially the biggest challenge faced by the service in getting smaller publishers on board will be that Google Analytics is a free service.


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