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Webometrics Rating Improvement as a Marketing Strategy

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Webometrics Rating and Ranking Improvement as a Marketing Strategy Sintyadi Thong Universitas Mercu Buana

WEBOMETRICS RANKING AND RATING IMPROVEMENT Abstract Webometrics ( has been used as one of the tools when making


decisions in choosing a University. When a prospect has several choices of Universities providing the same area of study, rating and ranking would come into consideration as the final – if not, an assessed weight in the decision making. Rating and ranking also shows the performance indicator and also shows how prestigious the University is. Through Webometrics, prospects can see the ranking of a University either regionally or internationally based on their rating, and the rating and ranking are updated periodically. Many Universities adopted this rating and ranking system on their own website as their marketing strategy to show that they are better than competitor Universities and the use of Webometrics can be analysed as it displays the University's prestige. This paper will discuss the us of Webometrics as marketing strategy by improving the University's rating and ranking in Webometrics. keyword(s): Webometrics, University rating, marketing strategy, web impact.

WEBOMETRICS RANKING AND RATING IMPROVEMENT Webometrics Rating and Ranking Improvement as a Marketing Strategy


Over the past few decades, internet grows wider, information gathering has been made simple. People could access information from anywhere and any time. As there have been a rapid growth in the use of websites to relay information, more and more people shared their insights to others by posting their knowledge into a website, thus we can find more than countable sources for a single subject. But, we should never forget the impact of advertising using internet. Many companies and organisations do not only promote their products or services through internet, but they created their own profile to advertise themselves and help customers to understand better about the company/organisation and their product. And this also applies for higher education institutes, they created their own website to promote and to relay information to others. Webometrics is considered and self-acclaimed to be the best higher education rating and ranking website. People could easily measure the performance and rating of the University based on their ever-changing ranking list of Universities. The word “web” in Webometrics also indicates that Webometrics focuses their assessment based on Web information. One of the most important aspect Webometrics see in a University is the number of webpages and their impact/presence in the online world. With this, Universities should develop their websites better as it also graded by Webometrics. And finally, the internal and external competitiveness of the University are also graded as citations to papers published by a University also taken into account.

WEBOMETRICS RANKING AND RATING IMPROVEMENT Literature Review Over the past few years, Universities put their world or national ranking and rating within their marketing campaign, advertisings and press releases (“Webometrics Web Ranking 2011,” 2011; Hidayat, 2014). Rating is very linear with demand or sales, as rating increases, the sales would also increase (Jiang & Wang, 2008; Zhu & Zhang, 2010). To some extent, the price could also go higher when the rating is high. This also is true for Higher Education Institutions as stated by Hidayanto, Rofalina and Handayani (2012). Aside from public ratings, Higher institutions with a good rating in websites can have a significant difference in enrolment rate compared to the other Universities. However, the distribution and outcomes of enrolment rate differs between Public


and Private institutions even when both of them have a high rating and ranking as there were less enrolment impact on private Universities with good ranking compared with public Universities with good ranking (Meredith, 2004). However, both of the results showed a positive impact on the enrolment rate and gathered more competent students to enrol. Webometrics was proposed to perform an evaluation to Universities through information gathered from the internet (Thelwall, 2012). Its indicators on evaluation include link analysis, web citation analysis, search engine evaluation and descriptive studies of the web (Thelwall, 2008). It has now became the most popular University ranking information website (Thelwall, 2008). From the Webometrics itself (Aguillo, n.d.), it outlines the 4 most important

WEBOMETRICS RANKING AND RATING IMPROVEMENT aspects of grading in Webometrics, they are: 1. Visibility of the website, that is the external links directing to the web-domain of the Universities. External links shows approval of the University's impact and prestige. This weights 50% of the grading criteria. Webometrics have their own


rules for the referrals to be eligible to be counted. The data will be processed and normalised to get the indicator resut. 2. Presence of the website, the number of pages submitted by the University in its own web-domain including the sub-domain and directories. This will be indexed by the pemasaran search engine. This forces the Universities to be more active and maintain their websites nicely. This weights about 1/3 of the remaining 50%. Nissom and Kulathuramaiyer (2012) stated that this actually weights 20% while the other last 2 criteria weight 15% each. 3. Openness, the effort the University is making by allowing their publication go public. Universities should dedicate their publishing in a website so that it can be queried by pemasaran Scholar. This weights for another 1/3 of the remaining 50% (around 15% weight based on Nissom and Kulathuramaiyer (2012)). 4. Excellence, the contributions through international journal published plays the key role in this grading criterion. However, it is not about the number of published journals, but it requires the paper to be the top 10% most cited papers. This weights the last 1/3 of the 50% (around 15% weight based on Nissom and Kulathuramaiyer (2012)). Each of the 4 will also be ranked accordingly and with calculations on the above

WEBOMETRICS RANKING AND RATING IMPROVEMENT weights, we can find the World rank. However, the real algorithm used by Webometrics for the criteria is hold as a secret by their researchers (Nissom and Kulathuramaiyer, 2012), thus there might be differences from our own calculations and webometrics. This paper will compare some selected Universities in Indonesia and discuss strategies to gain advantage on the 4 criteria evaluated by Webometrics so that the University's rating would go up and can raise the chance for a prospect to enrol to the University. Methodology As a method to compare the performance and rating of the Universities, several web tools are used. Scholarly articles which provide some ideas were also taken into account to better the solutions provided in this paper. Webometrics The Webometrics itself will be used since this is the benchmarking place between different Universities. Using the source itself, the data would have a high confidence ratio. pemasaran The search engine pemasaran is used by Webometrics in many ways, such as the pemasaran Scholar for academic resources. pemasaran is also used to count how many webpages submitted by the University by using the search key “site:”. For example type <> on pemasaran search to query how many web pages the has.


WEBOMETRICS RANKING AND RATING IMPROVEMENT Scholarly Articles Scholarly Articles used to gather solutions and ideas to improve the quality and rating of the University in regards to Webometrics assessment and evaluation system. Afrefs and Majestic Ahrefs and Majestic are used by Webometrics to measure the visibility of the website. Both of them will check how many domains, IPs, backlinks, and subnets are referencing to that site. They also allow users to analyse websites such as the popularity, the web ranking, the links from external web-domains directing to the website, website popularity based on domain source, and many other features which will be available through subscription. Ahrefs and Majestic only provides the raw data


which on the later stages will be re-queried and processed statistically. Not all reference links will be taken into account as there are some rules for the links to be considered eligible. Discussion Gaining advantage in the four criteria stated above is not an easy task. The criteria would require a very high investment on people and research, not only that, the University should also collaborate internally so that they can make a better impact on the web ratings. Some proposed ideas will be discussed as follows: Visibility of the Website Visibility of website requires an external support to make it happen. The easiest way to describe this is “how many web pages have a link directing to the University?”.

WEBOMETRICS RANKING AND RATING IMPROVEMENT Using Alexa, Ahrefs, and Majestic we can find how many web pages directing to the University's web page. Webometrics ranks this as Impact Rank.


For example, Universitas Gadjah Mada (UGM) ranked 224 in the Impact Rank. It has 1572 referring domains based on Majestic and 1862 on Ahrefs. It can be compared with Institut Teknologi Bandung (ITB) 292nd in Impact Rank. However, even though ITB has lower rank, somewhat it has higher domain referrals, with 2052 on Ahrefs and 2272 on Majestic. As stated above, the data provided by Ahrefs and Majestic are nothing but raw data which needs another process. And additionally, not all references considered eligible as Webometrics has their own standard. The above examples are taken from public Universities with good public rating. The public image could help the Universities to get reference links to their site. One of the possible suggestion for this is through a widespread partnerships with many organisations that would willingly help promoting the University. The other way is to have the students to use more internet actively, possibly an assignment to create a blog or website and put the University's website link in within. This would greatly increase the domain referencing.

WEBOMETRICS RANKING AND RATING IMPROVEMENT Presence of the Website The presence of the website plays an important role. The presence of the


website will count all the webpages consisted in the website. However Webometrics has a very strict rule for this, such as valid header, content, a non-automatically generated content, quality, etc. (Nissom and Kulathuramaiyer, 2012). Webometrics rank this as Presence Rank. The clearest evidence in this is from ITB. Using pemasaran we can find that ITB has approximately 161000 pages on their website. However ITB only ranked 3 rd in Indonesia, losing to UGM and Universitas Indonesia (UI) with 36300 and 21300 pages respectively. This shows how strict the rules from Webometrics regarding the submitted web pages. This can only be achieved if there is a good teamwork and contribution of all involved party in within the University. The personnels should contribute a good quality information regarding the University and be active in maintaining it. Universities should post and submit almost every quality information they have and also the activities they have which will also work as a marketing movement to interest prospects. Openness Some Universities provided their own dedicated repositories as a publication platform of their papers. This will also be evaluated through the accessibility using pemasaran Scholar. Webometrics measure this as Openness Rank. Institut Pertanian Bogor (IPB), Universitas Dipenogoro (UnDip) and UGM is the most open University in Indonesia. They ranked 13 th, 17th and 18th respectively in the

WEBOMETRICS RANKING AND RATING IMPROVEMENT world in the Openness Rank, even better than prestigious Universities such as Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), National University of Singapore (NUS), etc. The high rank of UGM can be considered as the main reason of why UGM can be the number one University in Indonesia based on Webometrics. The only way to achieve this is to submit more papers. Universities can advise students to work on quality papers. Universities should also provide an extensive and


direct guidance to students so that they can produce a quality academic paper, and can be submitted to the University's owned repository. There is another way to get this, and that is through people investment. College can invest on people by giving out scholarships, grants, or even low tuition fees for all. With this, Universities can gather more talented people to produce quality academic paper. Universities should also do more research and train students to become a good researchers or provide a research degree. Excellence Excellence rank is by far the hardest criterion to achieve. This requires an international paper published by a University to be cited lot of times. This will result in Excellence Rank. UI only ranked 1874th and is currently the highest rank that could be achieved by Indonesia. There is no other way than to provide more international journals. But one way to have more citations is to provide more papers in English, not in native languages.

WEBOMETRICS RANKING AND RATING IMPROVEMENT Most researchers also uses English as their keywords when looking up in the internet. Even though Universities advised to provide Abstract in 2 languages (English


and Native), it would not attract people to read more if the rest of the paper is written in the language they don't understand. By providing English papers, people can find our works easier, and we indirectly invited more people to read our papers hoping that it can be cited if the content is good, thus we can aim higher for this criterion. For example, UI provided their papers mostly, if not in English ( From several Indonesian quality academic papers, it was also found that most of the articles cited international and English based paper on their Literature Review. As search engine has been widely used (e.g. Google), through this evidence we can conclude that most Indonesian researchers uses English as the search keyword, and this supports the idea for paper submission in English so that we can invite more readers to our published papers. Conclusion When people have several similar alternatives, rating would be one of the consideration. Webometrics provided a rating and ranking system which has been approved internationally with pro and contra. By gaining a good rating, Universities can have an advantage in gathering students. But it might not be an easy task. The contribution and coordination of all University members are required to make this happen. Universities should widen its connection and partnership and train students to

WEBOMETRICS RANKING AND RATING IMPROVEMENT use internet more effectively so that the University's web impact would be higher. Not


only that, Universities should also maintain their websites so that information about the University can be accessed easily and also increases the presence of the University. Published papers also play an important role as it shows the performance of a University and also the indicator of achievement and the social contribution of the University. And if possible, the papers should be submitted in English to increase the chance for the papers to be found and recognised. And Universities should also invest on their students, because the students are the ones who will help the University grows. And as the University grows, hopefully the Webometrics ranking will go up, and then it will attract more students to enroll.

WEBOMETRICS RANKING AND RATING IMPROVEMENT References Aguillo, I. (n.d.). Methodology. Retrieved December 10, 2014.


Hidayanto, A. N., Rofalina, F., & Handayani, P. W. (2012). INFLUENCE OF PERCEIVED QUALITY OF University OFFICIAL WEBSITE TO PERCEIVED QUALITY OF University EDUCATION AND ENROLLMENT INTENTION. Hidayat, W. (2014, August 14). 17 Kampus Terbaik Indonesia Versi Webometrics. Kompas. Retrieved December 11, 2014, from ia.Versi.Webometrics Jiang, B., & Wang, B. (2008). Impact of consumer reviews and ratings on sales, prices, and profits: theory and evidence. ICIS 2008 Proceedings, Paper 141. Meredith, M. (2004). Why do Universities compete in the ratings game? An empirical analysis of the effects of the US News and World Report college rankings. Research in Higher Education, 45(5), 443-461. Nissom, S., & Kulathuramaiyer, N. (2012). The study of Webometrics Ranking of World Universities. Faculty of Computer Science and Information Technology UNIMAS. Retrieved December 11, 2014, from Study in UNIMAS.pdf Thelwall, M. (2012). A history of Webometrics. Bulletin of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, 38(6), 18-23. Thelwall, M. (2008). Bibliometrics to webometrics. Journal of information science.

WEBOMETRICS RANKING AND RATING IMPROVEMENT Zhu, F., & Zhang, X. (2010). Impact of online consumer reviews on sales: The moderating role of product and consumer characteristics. Journal of Marketing, 74(2), 133-148.


Webometrics Web Ranking 2011: National Taiwan University Top In Asia. (2011, August 2). Retrieved December 11, 2014.

WEBOMETRICS RANKING AND RATING IMPROVEMENT Appendix Webometrics, Ahrefs, Majestic and pemasaran Data Webometrics updates its data periodically in every 6 months. The ranking was collected from Webometrics as accessed in December 2014, based on July 2014 update (Hidayat, 2014). However the Ahrefs, Majestic and pemasaran were are collected based on December 2014 updates Table 1 Impact Rank and its raw data. Webometrics Rank World Impact Rank Rank 414 532 622 2038 2188 2195 4601 4797 224 389 292 2400 966 995 8712 6810


University Universitas Gadjah Mada Universitas Indonesia Institut Teknologi Bandung Binus University Universitas Esa Unggul Universitas Mercu Buana Universitas Tarumanagara Universitas Trisakti

Ahref Majestic Referring Referring Backlinks Backlinks Domains Domains 1862 1876 2052 583 539 876 239 552 144126 195992 522836 164757 4058 37356 16625 8924 1572 1609 2272 526 330 586 197 456 158122 178641 270464 173892 2686 30367 3694 7436

WEBOMETRICS RANKING AND RATING IMPROVEMENT Table 2 Presence Rank and its raw data. University Universitas Gadjah Mada Universitas Indonesia Institut Teknologi Bandung Binus University Universitas Esa Unggul Universitas Mercu Buana Universitas Tarumanagara Universitas Trisakti Table 3 Webometrics rank on selected Universities. University Universitas Gadjah Mada Universitas Indonesia Institut Teknologi Bandung Institut Pertanian Bogor Universitas Dipenogoro Binus University Universitas Esa Unggul Universitas Mercu Buana Universitas Tarumanagara Universitas Trisakti World Rank 414 532 622 813 1102 2038 2188 2195 4601 4797 Rank in Indonesia 1 2 3 4 6 17 22 23 70 72 Impact Rank 224 389 292 957 1560 2400 966 995 8712 6810 Webometrics Rank World Rank Presence Rank 414 292 532 306 622 478 2038 562 2188 3093 2195 1569 4601 5097 4797 5340


Approximate Number of Pages 36300 21300 161000 5630 3620 6770 581 14900

Presence Openness Excellence Rank Rank Rank 292 306 478 463 981 562 3093 1569 5097 5340 18 209 583 13 17 92 1328 2061 269 2903 2144 1874 2259 2802 3095 5442 5442 5442 5442 4831

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