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RP Photonics
Buyer's Guide
Technical consulting services on lasers, nonlinear optics, fiber optics etc.
Profit from the knowledge and experience of a top expert!
Powerful simulation and design software.
Make computer models in order to get a comprehensive understanding of your devices!
Success comes from understanding – be it in science or in industrial development.
The famous Encyclopedia of Laser Physics and Technology – available online for free!
The ideal place for finding suppliers for many photonics products.
Advertisers: Make sure to have your products displayed here!
… the one with the Encyclopedia!

Usage Statistics

The RP Photonics website is immensely popular. On this page, you can find out details on our traffic. This is relevant for those who are interested in advertising on our site. See also the media data.

Google Ranking

The ranking of our website on Google search results pages for laser technology is enormously high, probably surpassing the ranking of any other website worldwide.

Our page on search engine rankings tells you how you can easily verify that statement and what is behind this amazing success.

And that ranking explains the amazing traffic data:

Traffic of the RP Photonics Website

The RP Photonics website consists of four parts:

ConsultingSoftwareEncyclopediaBuyer's Guide
This describes the technical consulting business. This describes the simulation and design software offered by RP Photonics. The famous Encyclopedia of Laser Physics and Technology (started in 2004) with over 600 high-quality articles is the core magnet. It attracts huge amounts of traffic, part of which spills over into the other parts, particularly to the buyer's guide.

We consider our blog, the Photonics Spotlight, also as part of the encyclopedia.
The RP Photonics Buyer's Guide has over 2000 pages – mostly pages listing suppliers for all sorts of photonics products and company profiles.
In February 2017, the encyclopedia obtained 146'103 page views from 58'430 visitors. In February 2017, the buyer's guide had 13'226 page views, and the buyer's guide caused 6'292 referrals to websites of suppliers (even though most suppliers have only free entries!).

The combined traffic data for February 2017 are:

  • We had 176'612 page views. So many times, a page of our website has been displayed in the browser of some user.
  • There were 64'307 unique visitors.
  • There have been 93'360 referrals from Google to our website.

Note that typical users are seeking for technical information on most days, and look up suppliers only on some days. Therefore, they naturally cause more traffic on the encyclopedia than in the buyer's guide. However, as regular users of the encyclopedia, many will remember where to find the suppliers when these are needed. Also, there are kinds of enhanced entries which even allow displays on the pages of encyclopedia articles.

Evolution of traffic of the encyclopedia and the buyer's guide in the last 12 months:

MonthPage views
2016-03196'896 
2016-04192'213 
2016-05185'294 
2016-06159'486 
2016-07138'941 
2016-08142'514 
2016-09149'639 
2016-10160'750 
2016-11168'657 
2016-12134'094 
2017-01147'792 
2017-02159'329 

Total: 1'935'605 page views within 12 months.

Comparison with other Photonics Websites

The RP Photonics website belongs to the most popular photonics websites worldwide. Here is a comparison of page view numbers per month:

photonics.com
(media kit 2015)
237'000
rp-photonics.com
(average of 2014)
170'270
optics.org
(media information 2014)
108'000
Optics and Photonics News (OPN)
(media kit 2016)
28'333
photonik.de
(data 2013-2014)
12'654

Remark: our method of measuring traffic presumably leads to lower numbers than Google Analytics, which is used by most others. We do a strict filtering in order to obtain reliable data (see below for details).

Second remark: we have no way of checking published traffic numbers of others. You don't have that either. But anyone can check search engine rankings (see below).

What Kind of Users?

As we do not require our users to register with us, we have no detailed knowledge on them. However, it is perfectly clear that basically all users are experts working in the area of photonics – in industry or in scientific research. Due to the very technical nature of our website and its devotion to the area of photonics only, nobody else would spend time there.

Would you like to learn on our user surveys?

In May 2015, we did a survey among the readers of the Encyclopedia of Laser Physics and Technology. Within 24 hours (from Wednesday morning to Thursday morning), we obtained 1456 answers. The obtained results:

CategoryPercentage of Readers
a company producing or selling photonics products11%
a company applying photonics in other areas4%
other company5%
a university (research & education)42%
a research organization or government laboratory11%
other institution4%
no institution – just private interest23%

This confirmed our expectation that the vast majority of readers are professionals in the field of photonics, working either in scientific research or in the industry.

In June 2015, we did a similar survey among the users of the RP Photonics Buyer's Guide, asking what word best describes their function. We obtained the following results:

CategoryPercentage of Readers
scientist39%
engineer32%
marketing4%
sales3%
other22%

This shows that our buyer's guide obtains traffic not primarily from marketing people who simply want to check their own entries, but from those user groups which are most likely to buy photonics items.

Geographically, users are spread worldwide. Due to the use of the English language, the resource is accessible for a large proportion of the worldwide population, particularly for technical experts.

How We Get Reliable Traffic Data

Obtaining reliable web traffic data is not a trivial thing; we do that in a very careful way, which leads to tentatively lower traffic numbers and respects the privacy of the users.

If you like to learn how we do it, then click here.

Standard server statistics can be spoiled by the activity of various kinds of robots as used by search engines and spammers. In order to discard anything in the statistical data which is not related to real traffic, since 05/2013 we are using a statistics software which applies very strict filtering rules:

  • Only when Javascript is executed in the browser, a log entry is created. Therefore, most search engine robots are not counted. The few others who deal with Javascript are detected, and the results of their activity are ignored.
  • If a single machine (more precisely, a single IP combined with a user agent) is doing more than 200 page views on one day, that whole traffic is discarded, as it might be some robot activity. Additional filtering occurs when a machine often causes many page requests with a rather short temporal delay.
  • If a user loads the same page which he or she has just loaded before, only a single view is counted.
  • Views from any computers within RP Photonics are also discarded.

Unique visitors in a certain months are defined as unique combinations of IP address and user agent. (Before 10/2014, we considered only IP addresses, which resulted in lower numbers.) Due to various possible errors (see explanations in Wikipedia), such numbers may not be accurate. For example, one person may use different computers or browsers, or several persons may share one computer. The page view numbers are far less affected by such problems.

Note that we operate strictly in accordance with the strict German data protection laws. In particular, we do not record the users' IP addresses, but only store encrypted data, from which the IP values cannot be reconstructed (at least not without excessive computation power).

If we used Google Analytics instead of our own software, we would presumably obtain significantly higher traffic numbers, as Google Analytics would not filter out false hits (e.g., multiple hits to the same page) similarly strictly. We do not use Google Analytics due to concerns about privacy matters and related legal uncertainties.

The previously used AWStats software also reported substantially higher numbers than our new system. We conclude that our system provides a fairly conservative estimate of the web traffic.

This is the entry page of the buyer's guide.
Search by products, obtaining lists of suppliers for those.
See the list of all registered suppliers.
This buyer's guide is intimately connected with the huge photonics encyclopedia.
Learn how to get your company and your products registered.
The immensely popular encyclopedia and buyer's guide make this website ideal for advertising photonics products.
Here you can search for products by entering keywords: type some letters, select one of the offered entries and press "go there".