I was very happy to see MyHeritage.com at #3, Family Tree DNA at #27, JewishGen at #28, and other sites I use, such as GenBank (#41).
According to the WorldVitalRecords (#10) blog posting , Meyerink gave this presentation at the recent Conference on Computerized Family History and Genealogy, in Utah. That posting also explains how Meyerink calculated rankings:
Meyerink felt this list was needed to minimize opinion ranking and to provide a useful list based on an extensive study of genealogical Web traffic. He first merged the rankings from Alexa.com, Quantacast.com, Compete.com and Google PageRank. Then he used Alexa’s top 100 under Genealogy, Kip Sperry’s Link List, Genealogy Sleuth List, cross-linked sites noted on Alexa.com as similar, and Yahoo and Google Directories to compile the list.
Meyerink used sites that were specifically designed for genealogical purposes (free sites, as well as paid), multiple sites from the same owner (if they had a different URL), sites of primary interest to genealogists, and sites that had a ranking of 2-3 ranking services. He did not include the following type of sites in the list: government, repository, general sites (Google.com, Wikipedia.org), and general reference sites (dictionaries, gazetteers, calendars, etc.).
50 Most Popular Genealogy Websites for 2008
Kory L. Meyerink, MLS, AG, FUGA
Rank Website Coverage/Content
($ means subscription or fees required)
1. Ancestry.com $ - Ancestry.com is the leading genealogical data site, with some articles, instruction, and reference help.
2. RootsWeb.com - Rootsweb is a major data site, with free instruction and reference help.
3. MyHeritage.com - MyHeritage focuses on genealogy community building and networking.
4. Genealogy.com $ - This is major data site, with instruction and reference help.
5. FamilySearch.org - This is a major data website sponsored by the LDS Church and includes with instruction and reference help.
6. MyFamily.com - Hosts family websites for sharing photos, genealogy, and more.
7. FindAGrave.com - A database of cemetery inscriptions and photos.
8. Footnote.com $ - In conjunction with the U.S. National Archives, Footnote offers data, original records images, and more.
9. OneGreatFamily.com $ - This is primarily a family trees sharing and collaboration website.
10. WorldVitalRecords.com $ - WVR is also known as Family Link, and represents a major data website, with instruction and reference help.
11. GenealogyToday.com - Genealogy Today includes instruction, reference articles, and includes some unique data collections.
12. AncestorHunt.com - A site consisting of collected genealogy links.
13. AccessGenealogy.com - A website that includes references to helpful articles, especially for Native American information, and some data.
14. EllisIsland.org - Database of passenger lists that is free to search. Actual passenger list images can be purchased.
15. CyndisList.com - A huge website dedicated to cataloguing genealogy website links.
16. Interment.net - Transcribed and indexed cemetery inscriptions.
17. USGennet.org - Historical and genealogical web hosting service.
18. Geni.com - Web 2.0 and focuses on genealogy community building and networking.
19. KindredKonnections.com $ - Grassroots created data site with compiled family Trees, and some extracted records.
20. FamilyTreeMaker.com - Homepage for Ancestry.com's genealogical software.
21. SearchForAncestors.com - Interactive directory of free genealogy websites and data.
22. DistantCousin.com - An online archive of genealogy records and images of historical documents.
23. CousinConnect.com - A large free queries website.
24. GeneBase.com - A DNA ancestry cataloguing project
25. TribalPages.com - Family trees hosting and charting program.
26. SurnameWeb.org - A collection of surname website links; online since 1996.
27. FamilyTreeDNA.com - DNA testing service focused upon family history test types.
28. JewishGen.org - Jewish, reference, instruction, coordination, and databases.
29. ObitCentral.com - Obituary database for finding obituaries and performing cemetery searches.
30. GenCircles.com - Upload and share your family trees.
31. DeathIndexes.com - Lists of links to United States death records, by state.
32. Genuki.org.uk - Large collection of genealogical information pages for England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, the Channel Islands, and the Isle of Man.
33. Daddezio.com - Website focused upon Italian research, with instruction, information and more.
34. PoliticalGraveyard.com - Comprehensive source of U.S. political biography that tells where many dead politicians are buried.
35. Linkpendium.com - A collection of genealogy links categorized by region and surname.
36. Geneanet.org - A collection of family trees, community, and submitted records.
37. US-Census.org - Census abstracts (U.S. GenWeb Census Project)
38. AncientFaces.com - Share genealogy research, community pages, family photos & records more for free.
39. HeritageQuestOnline.com $ - Census, PERSI (the periodical index), books.
40. CensusFinder.com - Links to free census records.
41. GenealogyBank.com $ - Database with index of newspapers and early books.
42. GenWed.com - Online marriage records, where to order, some indexes, and more.
43. GenealogyLinks.net - Links to free sites, arranged by state and county.
44. WorldRoots.com - European nobility and German reference material.
45. ProGenealogists.com - Website created by professional genealogists with links, instruction, data, and reference aids.
46. Census-Online.com - Links to censuses and census abstracts.
47. FamilyTreeMagazine.com - Website for magazine publisher that includes shopping, links, and research tools.
48. KindredTrails.com - Links to genealogy and data websites.
49. USGenWeb.com - A group of volunteers working together to provide free genealogy websites for genealogical research in every county and every state of the United States.
50. FindMyPast.com $ - Indexes to British records of many types.