What describes the stereotypical genealogist? A 60 year old+ woman who is the repository of family stories and history? A college educated professional with advanced degrees who writes for genealogical journals? I was in my 30s when I first began slogging away at building a family tree. Are we old just because we have been doing genealogy for a long time? If you look at the demographics of my blog readers from Alexa, just for an example, relative to the general Internet population, I am far less popular in the 25 year old to 45 year old age group and much more popular in the over 55 years old group of Internet users. Not much of a surprise. Again in the general Internet population, I am much more popular with those who have some graduate school education, slightly more popular among males than females, less popular with users that have children, more popular at work and less popular at home, very much more popular with high income groups, especially those make more than $100,000 a year, and Genealogy's Star is heavily into white Caucasians.
Comparing the demographics of Genealogy's Star to FamilySearch.org is interesting. I am more popular than FamilySearch among African Americans, Asians, Hispanics, and MiddleEastern populations. I am a whole lot more popular with those who attended graduate school, my readership is predominantly male, while FamilySearch.org seems to be dominantly female. Genealogy's Star has the same popularity with FamilySearch.org for families with or without children, but FamilySearch.org is used predominantly at home while my readership is at work.
Another interesting comparison is Genealogy's Star to Ancestry.com. Here are the results:
- Age: About the same
- Education: Genealogy's Star still shines much higher in the graduate school crowd. Ancestry.com and FamilySearch.org have about the same educational level audience.
- Gender: I have a male readership, both Ancestry.com and FamilySearch.org are predominantly female.
- Children: Ancestry.com has a slightly higher percentage of subscribers with children.
- Browsing Location: Ancestry.com is used in the home, my readers seem to prefer reading me at work.
- Income: I cater to the high rollers. Neither FamilySearch.org nor Ancestry.com have anything close to the predominance I have among high income readers.
- Ethnicity: FamilySearch.org and Ancestry.com have the same spread of interests except Ancestry.com attracts more African Americans.
On the other hand, how may genealogists are bloggers? I don't mean how many bloggers are there, but overall what percentage of genealogists are online sharing family stories, lineages, support, technology and news? Do all of the people who have subscriptions to Ancestry.com qualify as "genealogists?"
OK, with all this, am I any closer to defining the genealogists? Yeah, here are the conclusions:
- Age: Definitely over 45 years of age.
- Education: Definitely higher education. Even though Genealogy's Star's demographics were decidedly to the graduate school level, both Ancestry.com and FamilySearch.org have markedly more upper education viewers.
- Gender: No conclusion. But I suspect a lot more women than men, just by observation.
- Has Children: Having children seems to be a disincentive to doing genealogy.
- Browsing location: Really doesn't tell us much.
- Income: Genealogists have a higher to much higher income than the average.
- Ethnicity: Again, not much here that helps define genealogists.