85% of Startpage traffic sourced from one site? (per Alexa)

Check out this Alexa competitive analysis for Startpage. Scroll down to the “Traffic Sources” section.

Why is the source of 85% of Startpage traffic reportedly from inspire.scot?

Compare this with Alexa’s DuckDuckGo traffic sources.

What is going on? Why is so much of Startpage traffic reportedly sourced from inspire.scot?

(I’ve also posted this at the privacytoolsIO subreddit. I’m very curious about how this could be. Maybe a mistake?)


From what I can tell, inspire.scot helps with Search Engine Optimization (along with other things). This may be a way for Startpage to generate more traffic to its site to increase its Alexa rank.

1 Like

Right. But how does inspire.scot “get” people to send them to Startpage? Would they be collecting information from those people?

1 Like

My guess is that it probably goes like this:

inspire.scot advertises for Startpage across different platforms (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) using their own URLS to redirect to Startpage. The reason they do this is to keep track of the traffic information that they are sending over to Startpage and to check to see if they are meeting their advertising goals.

I’m not sure why Startpage would need a service like this, didn’t Duckduckgo grow organically?

I found this: https://www.inspire.scot/our-services/search-engine-optimisation-packages/pay-per-click
Scrolling down a little there is a section called: " So what actually happens in a PPC campaign? When we work with Google Adwords, the basics are as follows:"

When people click on advertising links on Google (I’m also assuming Facebook, Twitter, etc), inspire.scot can see “impressions”, “display network sites that sent traffic to you”. I think that they use an inspire.scot URL to redirect people to Startpage.com in their advertisements, this allows inspire.scot to keep track of clicks, impressions, etc.


Wow. Thanks for this information! Makes sense, but it must be costly. Maybe they figure they’ll make it up with clicks on ads?

I’m surprised that 85% of their measured traffic happens this way now! That’s not something I ever saw.

I’m guessing there are lots of other direct searches that aren’t factored in. Maybe this is 85% of redirected traffic?

I have a post requesting help with this at privacytoolsIO (the subreddit). Would you consider posting there? I’m sure people would like a reasoned answer to the mystery.

1 Like

This is all speculation, but that’s what I think they’re doing.

Also, can you post a link to this thread on Reddit? I don’t agree with Reddit’s policies/actions and I actively avoid using them.

1 Like