His assertion is that “only 50% of IE users who come to www.mozilla.org download Firefox”. He works this out by taking the number of IE-user downloads of Firefox per day (estimated at 50% of total by Asa) and dividing it by pageviews per day of www.mozilla.org and www.mozilla.org/products/firefox/, which he classes as “end user pages”.
The flawed assumptions in this logic include, but are not limited to:
- all views of those two pages are from people wanting to download Firefox – which is obviously not true for www.mozilla.org, and probably not true for /products/firefox/;
- a particular downloader only views a single one of those pages, rather than both;
- a particular downloader only views a particular one of those pages once – they don’t, for example, read about Firefox at work and then download it at home;
- all attempted downloads after viewing a page succeed, and aren’t cut off by e.g. network trouble, a little sister picking up the phone extension, or some other reason (the download stats count completed downloads).
But even if we ignore all the above and take his figures as correct, other businesses would kill for a 50% conversion rate of interested people to customers. In the circumstances, I’d say we are doing rather well.
He may well be right that the front page could use improvement – but that depends on your underlying aim for it, which is the real point of controversy. Some believe that www.mozilla.org should be focussed on all that mozilla.org does, not just Firefox, and we should use e.g. getfirefox.com to plug Firefox exclusively. Others think www.mozilla.org should focus on whatever the flavour of the month is. Without agreement on this point, suggested changes to the front page will founder on the deeper disagreement.
He is right on at least one thing, though. The phrase “declaration of independence from a monopolized and stagnant web” has no place in our newspaper advertising. It’s meaningless political posturing, and a big turn-off. (I suspect and hope it’s not going to be there, and it’s just something Blake thought up for his blog post.)