eRobertParker.com requires a paid subscription to access virtually all of its content. A more equitable comparision to it would be to the bulletin board portion of the sites. The only major part of the site accessible to the general public is Mark Squire's Bulletin Board (http://dat.erobertparker.com/bboard/index.php?
Parker's/Squire's Bulletin Board has 13,123 members and 1,860,312 posts in 147,493 threads. Coffee Geek Discussions has 34,078 members and 361,018 posts in 46,050 threads. Home-Barista.com Forums has 2801 members and 65,457 posts in 5601 threads.
FYI Alexa doesn't work like that and not that simple
A site's rank is evaluated with reach+traffic+page views and it's re-calculated every day to be summed in 3/6/9/12 months period, as well as years.
ALSO, when a site's traffic rank calculated, all sub domains and folders/sub folders are included, which means dat.erobertparker.com is also a sub domain of erobertparker.com and counted already, if there was a fat.erobertparker.com that would be counted too (you can check this yourself by typing whatever full address you want in alexa site search box)
erobertparker.com --> domain
dat.erobertparker.com --> subdomain
dat.erobertparker.com/bbord --> a folder containing a forum under a sub domain
All actually same
A site's rank depends on many things but number of members is not the right criteria to begin with. It "technically" proves nothing other than "joy" to site owner. You can build a site with 5000 members and all those members could be just the same person. Yeah you'd rank at first place (probably "bottom" first
) Membership shows dedication in a way. But there are curious surfers out there or dedicated but shy people who just follows instead of posting. Alexa counts almost everything. And that's why by professionals Alexa ranking is considered as a criteria when you apply for banner publishing in your site. Also number of posts is not taken into consideration. A site may have 2 zillion posts viewed only 2 zillion times, but on the other hand another site may have 100,000 posts viewed 2 zillion times.
As I previously stated, "the ranks" recalculated and summed in periods cos user behaviour and preferences changes often. You can see how reliable Alexa is just by checking top 500 sites all around the world, I don't think you'll be surprised. It's valuable data to some, and to some it's not. Since I posted that message 3 months traffic ranks changed. Lets look at new ones.. As for last 3 months;Coffeegeek.com has a traffic rank of: 53,332
(previously 74,957)Home-barista.com has a traffic rank of: 227,139
(previously 316,298 --huge leap!!--)Erobertparker.com has a traffic rank of: 62,257
Where people go on Erobertparker.com:
dat.erobertparker.com - 61%
erobertparker.com - 39%
Now about paid content part. I believe if there was paid content section in coffeegeek or home-barista, it wouldn't hurt their rank, versa it could have positive impact on site's rank. It's not like "oh no I'm not going there ever! Because it's showing paid content!!" people get more curious when they can't view freely, so they start wandering around, just in case they get the opportunity to see, it's in human nature
Anyways.. that's not the main subject of this topic, that was just an example to support my point of view in my previous post, a powerful example showing "actually how wide the audience is" if you care to listen. Mods may feel free to delete this message.
Resistance is futile. You will be caffeinated!