Our (my) intention was to produce these reports and blog posts on a semi-frequent basis. It turns out that working in a startup means that your priorities shift quickly. This report sadly became a victim of these shifts, and hasn’t had the attention it deserves. So I am making a concerted effort to publish these more frequently than once every 9 months.
I took some time this go around to clean up our widget classification quality and relevance. As business models change, and web products morph, it can be difficult to accurately classify every service with a widget. If you have have any feedback regarding the way I classify a widget, let me know in the comments. I would also be interested to hear if there are specific widget verticals that we aren’t reporting on that you would like to see.
Below are the top 50 widget providers by domain, ordered by the percentage of blogs which contain at least one widget from the provider. Google is the obvious leader here. The top 20 hasn’t changed much in the last 9 months, which shows Google’s strength in the ad and analytics space.
Popularity by Vertical
Below are the rankings of widgets within some of the top verticals. Note that each pie graph represents the percentage widget distribution among all widget objects from the vertical. Different this time around is our inclusion of comments widgets. We previously showed trackbacks here, but I felt that comments and commenting widgets are more relevant in the blog market and have a higher install penetration than they did 9 months ago.
Woohoo – Check out Lijit !!!! To be fair, we are number one in the graph now due to the reclassification of the snap.com widget. We previously considered them a search widget, but their primary tool does website previews and doesn’t relate to the search vertical in my opinion.
Our survey is primarily focused on widgets that are permanent fixtures on a blog, not those that are embedded in posts. Our crawler makes a note of widgets found in front-page posts, and these are primarily video widgets.Here is a graph of relative popularity of video widgets in blog posts. You’ll notice there are a lot more video providers in the list. It’s good to see some of the smaller guys grabbing some of the market share.
Our definition of “widget” is
- “Functionality” includes analytics widgets. These add functionality for the blogger but are invisible to visitors.
- “Regularly occurring” excludes widgets embedded in posts, such as YouTube and Dailymotion videos. (We do collect statistics on these, however. The final chart of this post shows the results.) Widgets that occur on all posts, such as the “Digg This” widget, are included.
- “Voluntarily” excludes widgets automatically added by the blog hosting platform. We are only interested in widgets that bloggers make an effort to install.
- Image-based badges, such as FeedBurner subscriber counts, are not counted. HTML forms, such as the original Google search boxes, are also not counted.
Our crawl is “centered” on blogs with our Lijit widget. Our crawler then expands outwards by following blogrolls. This will give a bias to the overall results.
Number of blogs examined: 184,431
Blogs with widget of any sort: 146,636
Total number of widget installations found:1,222,155
Survey period: 9/26/2007 – 11/06/2008