Bill Hartzer

Avast Closing Jumpshot, Some SEO Tool Providers Affected

Avast, a digital security products company, has announced that they are shutting down Jumpshot, a company that has provided “digital intelligence from within the Internet’s most valuable walled gardens”. There apparently were some questions about how and to whom the data that Jumpshot shared and sold. Some of the companies that utilized Jumpshot data were SEO tool providers, who then sold the data to SEOs, who used it for keyword research purposes, for example.

In a press release, Avast had this to say about the closing of Jumpshot: “The bottom line is that any practices that jeopardize user trust are unacceptable to Avast. We are vigilant about our users’ privacy, and we took quick action to begin winding down Jumpshot’s operations after it became evident that some users questioned the alignment of data provision to Jumpshot with our mission and principles that define us as a Company”.

It’s widely known that some Search Engine Optimization tool providers have used Jumpshot-provided data as part of the data they provide to their users. For example, some SEO tool providers that provide keyword research need the data, so they will buy the data from providers such as Jumphot, and repackage it or combine it with other data that they have.

One of the concerns from SEOs and digital marketers is that since Jumpshot is being shut down and will no longer provide data, some SEO tools will cease to function or provide inaccurate data. For example, Rand Fishkin mentioned that he and Moz were, at some point, customers of Jumpshot:

“Throughout this post, I’ll be using numbers from the clickstream data company, Jumpshot. They are, in my opinion, the best, most reliable source of information on what happens inside web browsers because of how they gather, process, and scale their estimates. That’s why SparkToro, and Moz (my previous company) are both customers of Jumpshot.”

Back in August 2019, Rand confirmed, in that article, that Moz was a customer of Jumpshot. I have no information currently as to whether not Moz currently uses Jumpshot data. I have reached out to Moz for a commment, but have not heard back from them. If I get a comment from them, I will update the post.

Rand, however, did offer this about the closing of Jumpshot:

“Avast’s decision to shut down Jumpshot is wrong.

Anonymized, aggregated data does not violate privacy. And this data source was out best shot at holding the tech monopolies to account.

Good day to be an anti-competitive monopolist. Bad day for everyone else. Blog post coming.”

Since I’ve seen another SEO tool provider mentioned, SEMrush“>SEMrush, I reached out to SEMrush for a comment, and they had this to say about the closing of Jumpshot:

“Over the last 3 years many SEO tools started using clickstream data to power keyword research features, estimate search volumes and calculate some other metrics. SEMrush invested in relationships with multiple data vendors and many of these vendors work exclusively with us. So SEMrush products won’t be impacted by this in any way. From what we know some other leading SEO companies worked only with Jumpshot. While it’s too early to say, we might be the only source of reliable keyword data in the near future among key SEO players.”

There generally a two sources that SEO tool providers use for the data that they provide us, as digital marketers

The other option could be a combination of those two, which would be their own data as well as other data that they purchase from other data providers. Ideally, my personal opinion is that the data would be from a variety of sources, scrubbed in some way, and then presented to the user of that tool. Regardless of how the data is presented, we need to take it with a grain of salt: it’s not going to be 100 percent accurate 100 percent of the time.

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