If you can recall back to late January, you might remember a gigantic hullabaloo over comScore. The company had decided to improve the way it tracked traffic to websites, and they wanted to charge for it. That action made a large number of people quite unhappy.
“What about the startups”, they questioned, “those are the companies that need access to the best stats the most, and simply cannot afford the thousands of dollars that comScore wants to charge!” comScore, a public company, said they were doing the best they could. After all, tracking a new website is not inexpensive, especially at the beginning to set up the tracking tools that will report to comScore.
Things have now changed, with comScore today announcing that everyone can now be outfitted with the comScore tracking pixel for free. Even more, companies that have fewer than one million unique visitors a month can use the comScore dashboard free of charge as well. comScore has found some way to make the math work.
The new program, called “Start-up, Step-Up,” is designed to both assist and up sell startups. Once a website exceeds one million unique visitors it must begin to pay comScore for the privilege of using the dashboard. If the website is between one and two million uniques, a special rate of $799 per month is now in place. comScore is making a play to aggregate more information directly than nearly anyone else online, perhaps to fend off competitors Compete and Quantcast.
The largest question on comScore’s investor’s minds has to be this: if comScore felt the need to charge $5,000 to set up tracking before, what has changed? Whatever the answer, this is great news for all the startups in the world looking to get excellent traffic reporting.