What is Bibliometrics and Scientometrics?

Bibliometrics and scientometrics are two closely related approaches to measuring scientific publications and science in general, respectively.  In practice, much of the work that falls under this header involves various types of citation analysis, which looks at how scholars cite one another in publications.  This data can show quite a bit about networks of scholars and scholarly communication, links between scholars, and the development of areas of knowledge over time.

What are Analytics?

Analytics are overall statistics about traffic and visitors to your website.  These are among the most common measures already widely used to discuss whether a website is having an impact.  Examples of the sorts of data available from analytics include basic statistics about your website, including:

What are interviews?

An interview is a conversation in which the interviewer questions the interviewee in order to gain information.  Interviews can be formal or informal, structured or unstructured.  They can be conducted one-to-one or in groups, face to face or by telephone, Skype, or email.

What are focus groups?

Focus groups are widely used in the social sciences as well as in fields such as marketing as a way to get a group of people to discuss an issue in-depth. Focus groups can be thought of as a type of group interview in which participants are encouraged to enter into conversation with each other on topics chosen by (and guided by) a facilitator.

What is Content Analysis?

Content analysis refers to a general set of techniques useful for analysing and understanding collections of text.  There is considerable work done in this area, which predates Internet research by decades.  In the context of understanding the impact of digitised collections and websites, one particularly relevant type of content analysis is the analysis of news articles.  These news articles may be about the collection, or they may be about the type of resource in general.

What is referrer analysis?

Referrer analysis is a process by which you can determine more specifically how a digital resource is being used. You can find out, for example, if a collection or site is being used in a taught course or if a resource recommended by an academic library. Referrer analysis makes use of several webometric methods, including web log analysis and link analysis.

For a detailed guide and examples, see the attached report.

Surveys for Evidence of Impact

One common way to gauge awareness of a resource and to ask questions of the users of a resource is to field a survey.  Care must be taken, however, because of the survey fatigue that many Internet users experience as they are repeatedly asked for their views on various websites.  In addition, most users have been taken to very poorly designed surveys on numerous occasions and may be leery of your survey if it appears to be poorly designed or amateurish.

What is webometrics?

Webometrics is (a) a set of quantitative techniques for tracking and evaluating the impact of web sites and online ideas and (b) the information science research field that developed these ideas. Webometric techniques include link analysis, web mention analysis, blog analysis and search engine evaluation, but from the perspective of digital library evaluation the main method is link analysis.

Wikipedia links

If you want to find the links to a particular URL or domain from Wikipedia, you can use the following utility:

Just type in your specific link or domain, and the results will link you to every Wikipedia page that uses it. Simple!

BaGLAMa2 can also find the total number of views of Wikipedia Commons files from many GLAM (Galleries, Libraries, Archives, and Museums) pages:



An extremely active part of the social media world is Twitter. Many digital projects and digital experts maintain Twitter accounts to increase their visibility and reach. How do you measure the impact of Twitter, however?

While there are several tools available, the appropriate tool depends in part on the quantity of tweets you anticipate needing to analyse.


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