Ranker

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Ranker [1] is a social consumer web platform designed around collaborative and individual list-making and voting. All lists on Ranker are powered by linked datasets to power “connected listmaking” across over 7 million rankable items on different verticals and topics.

Ranker launched in August, 2009, and has since grown to over 5.8 unique visitors per month and over 21 million monthly page views, according to Quantcast.com. As of May 2013 Ranker’s US traffic was ranked at 498.[1] Ranker also garners significant traffic from the mobile web, ranking 92 in the US on Quantcast.

The site was founded by serial entrepreneur Clark Benson whose previous site, eCrush, sold to Hearst in 2006. Board members include Draper Associates investor Joel Yarmon and former MySpace CEO and Userplane founder Michael Jones. Ranker has raised a total of $3.1 million in funding, beginning with a $1 million seed round in 2008 and buffeted by a Series A investment round of $1.3 in April 2011. Other Ranker investors include Draper Associates, Rincon Venture Partners, Siemer Venture Capital and various angels, including Factual founder Gil Elbaz, Ryan Steelberg, and founder Clark Benson himself.[2] Ranker’s content and data partners include Google-owned Freebase[2], as well as Factual[3]

Ranker has many lists that reflect an individual's opinion, but also features "Ultimate Lists" that are determined by a combination of users ranking their version of a given topic, and then allowing individuals to vote positively or negatively on the rank of items on the list. Ranker states that 15% of visitors vote on an average of 10 items per ranking [3] Ranker explains that the Ultimate Lists weigh inputs heavier than votes, stating "while every vote counts, your ranked lists count a lot more." Ranker's Ultimate lists have been cited in sources such as Forbes, Motley Fool, and VentureBeat.

Ranker is designed to collect individual user votes and track them, using cookies, across various lists. Per the company's blog,[4] this allows the company to assemble a taste graph for people who have voted on lists, as opposed to the sort of social graph that sites like Facebook can assemble using their users' personal data. Ranker has also used their taste graph to perform Factor Analysis, a way of looking deeper into user voting trends (for example, the connections between movies that a certain group of people all tagged as "bad.") [5]

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