Below is a list of the top 50 travel blogs for the 3rd quarter (July – September) of 2012 ranked by visitor traffic.
There are a few other sites that have put together their own lists of the “top” travel blogs. However, each has their own subjective means of ranking sites, using everything from Alexa scores, Twitter followers, Facebook likes, estimated traffic, inbound Google links and even subjective design criteria.
My intention was to create the most objective and accurate list of the most popular travel blogs. Therefore, this list is based solely on the number of visitors a travel blog receives. To read more about how this list was put together, please read below.
I reached out to a large sampling of travel bloggers and asked that they provide me with a screenshot of their Google Analytics page reflecting their site’s visitor statistics over the third quarter of 2012. The reasoning behind this method was that I wanted to obtain a rolling average to compensate for monthly spikes that may have occurred. Further, utilizing Google Analytics as the uniform measure of traffic helped to ensure uniformity of data across all sampling.
Of course, due to this method of collecting data, only those site owners that submitted their statistics were included for consideration in the rankings. Those that did not submit were not considered. Further, in an effort to maximize the number of participants and to protect specific traffic numbers that some site owners regard as sensitive and private, I agreed to keep all specific data confidential and not include those numbers in the rankings.
Why This Metric?
Simple, it’s the most accurate, best picture of a site’s traffic. As everyone knows, Alexa is not very accurate and can be easily manipulated. Inbound links are a great sign of SEO, but just because a site does well with Google doesn’t mean it has a lot of visitors. Twitter followers are great, but that doesn’t necessarily translate into site readers.
Quite simply, unique visitors is the one metric that most accurately reflects a site’s readership.
I understand that just because a site gets a high number of unique visitors doesn’t mean it’s the highest quality site. There are plenty of excellently written, well-designed, engaging sites that may not have high traffic numbers.
My intention was not to create a list of the best, or the most useful, or the most professional travel blogs. I simply wanted to create the most accurate list of the most visited blogs. Just as the movie weekend box office results are reported every week, I simply wanted to create an unbiased, objective list of the most visited travel blogs for research purposes.
Finally, I hope this list will serve as a useful guide and a good starting point for travelers and readers around the world looking to explore the vibrant and eclectic travel blogging community, and expose them to some great travel blogs that they otherwise may not be reading.
If you are a travel blogger who would like to be considered for inclusion in the 4th-quarter list, please e-mail me a screenshot of your Google Analytics page reflecting your site’s overall traffic from October 1 – December 31 to: [email protected].
TheExpeditioner.com is a travel site for the avid traveler featuring travel articles from some of the best travel writers in the world, as well as travel news, commentary, insight and video from a premiere team of bloggers from around the globe.