Google Analytics Benchmarking - Switch it Off!

I am not writing this post to make a huge deal out of it, but something is strange when it comes to Google Analytics Benchmark feature. As you probably know, Google Analytics allows you to opt-in in order to share your data. If you do so it shares the data in an "anonymous form".

But what does anonymous mean? Here two examples that might show what "anonymous" means for Google:

First of all Mediadonis noticed that Google trends showed one of his top-outbound link also as the top visited page in Google and he is not quite sure where Google trends got this info from.

Also Erick over at Techcrunch noticed, that...

"...Google['s] Ad Planner appears to be the same thing consumers can see on Google Trends for Websites. In fact, that is just a light version of Google Ad Planner, which uses some of the same underlying data—”aggregated Google search data, opt-in anonymous Google Analytics data, opt-in external consumer panel data, and other third-party market research.”"

I am not sure how far Google Analytics data is used for other Google tools and I am not sure how much data comes from Google's toolbar, but what I know is that I don't want to share this data with anybody else.

Until Google explains a little bit more on how the Google Analytics data is used, I recommend everybody to switch it off. Not solely because of Google, but b/c of competition that easily can use the data for their advantage.