Where can I find link histories?
February 19, 2011 9:07 AM   Subscribe

Is there any website that allows you to see the history of linking and traffic driven to a particular website? Explanation inside.

Take a website like Metafilter. Is there a website that lets one look at the history of linking to Metafilter since it was first put online. I'm thinking in terms a tool that would show how links grow over time, along with ranking by amount of traffic driven by each link. Such a tool would effectively be a window into the history of how Metafilter achieved its web popularity. Perhaps some Alexa or Google feature that I don't know about can do this.
posted by prunes to Computers & Internet (4 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Do you mean backlink tracking tools, like this one. Google the term backlink, assuming this is what you want or backlink history. Another is http://www.backlinkwatch.com/index.php. Most of these site are a bit hokey and used to try and manipulate rankings but the data might be interesting. The backlinkwatch shows number of links from a site but not timeframe so no history over time.
posted by shoesietart at 10:00 AM on February 19, 2011

link:siteurl works directly in Google (for example link:metafilter.com). This would give you a rough approximation of inbound links. many of them dated; using other features in Google advanced search to narrow date ranges might help. Inbound and outbound links are also available at Alexa, along with traffic analysis (click on "Traffic Rank" under "Traffic Analysis", but (as yet) nothing that shows link growth over time.
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 10:01 AM on February 19, 2011

Yes I know of google's link: feature but I'm more interested in being able to study how a site grows in popularity over time (goes viral).
posted by prunes at 10:04 AM on February 19, 2011

Google might have this data themselves, but I'm not aware of a link-history like this being publicized. The difficult part is that it has to have been done by someone tracking who's-linking-who the whole time, which rules out sites like Alexa and Archive.org which pay attention chiefly to availability and content changes only.
posted by rhizome at 11:15 AM on February 19, 2011

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