Internet marketers keep asking how well that their web site is doing when compared with their competitor's web sites. The problem is that it's impossible to actually get the confidential details of their competitors to find out how traffic that a website is getting. You can observe how well that they are ranking in the major search engines, but you will not know how traffic that they're getting. One place that many site owners use is the traffic rankings supplied by Alexa. They use data compiled from users that have their toolbar running on the web browser and record information on the websites that they have a look at. Based on this information they give a ranking of all the websites depending on the traffic. A large issue with the ratings is that they are influenced towards the sorts of sites that those who are more tech savvy have a tendency to go to, as it is only these kinds of individuals who tend to set up the toolbar. Individuals who are less tech knowledgeable, usually do not install the toolbar and in all likelihood have a tendency to visit different types of websites.
The issue with the Alexa Ranking is that it is so easy to influence that you really have no idea if what you view is true or if it has been manipulated by your competitor to look better than it really is. All you have to do to artificially improve the Alexa rating is set up the toolbar on your computer and just go to your site a couple of times every day and then watch as your Alexa rating improves. Better yet, get a few friends to do it also. There are even paid providers that can do this for you to artificially increase the ranking. This is the reason the Alexa rating number might well be not really worth spending much time on as it is so easy to manipulate.
A final word on the Alexa rating is that it is just that, a ranking of websites depending on site visitors that is easily manipulated. No internet search engine uses the Alexa rating to rank websites, so there is not any benefit to having a good Alexa rating.