Analyzing the 2007 statistics for federated search via our MetaLib installation provides yet more interesting reading:
- There were 122 resources that received any traffic at all
- The top ten sources account for 60.8% of all searches
- The top 15 sources account for 72.3% of all searches
- Eight (numbers two–nine) of the top ten were full-text services/journal content providers
- The total number of searches per platform (not federated search) was 28,037
- Of the top 15, five databases were directly relevant to psychology
What do we learn from this?
- There weren’t many federated searches performed
- People want content, not bibliographic data (which explains why full-text sources are so popular)
- Certain subjects that have many relevant databases with similar indexing techniques lend themselves well to federated search (read: psychology)
These stats don’t include combined searches offered on individual platforms (like CSA’s Illumina), only data from MetaLib.
On the whole, the number of searches is pretty uninspiring; we should probably focus on teaching users how to use the federated search tools we have.