Thursday, 23 January 2014

Changes at FindMyPast

Being a Brit with almost my entire known ancestry in the UK, as well as a Canadian, I have a soft spot for British genealogical organisations. I relish the innovation-leadership of TNA.

But what's happened to FindMyPast? It seems, compared to the competition, specifically Ancestry, FMP is getting left behind.

Its reflected in the rankings recently published by GenealogyInTime; The FMP UK (.co.uk) site ranked 18th globally among genealogy sites, down from 14th a year ago. That's very respectable but going the wrong way. Even just focusing on the UK, FMP Alexa ranked 1,234th out of all websites while Ancestry Alexa ranked 355th. Globally the US (.com) site ranked 59th among genealogy sites, down from 48th; Genes Reunited fell from 24th to 30th. FMP has a long way to go to catch up with North American records, with only a small amount of Canadian content, not even the census!

On the plus side there are associated sites in the larger D C Thomson group. Scotlands People climbed from 53rd to 48th. It has a virtual stranglehold on Scottish records. The British Newspaper Archive, with a unique agreement with the British Library, climbed from 68th to 57th.
It all goes to show that content is king and having unique content is a winning formula. Duh! If it weren't for the access to British newspapers I'd probably drop my FMP subscription.

That's by way of prelude to information on changes coming to FMP, perhaps just the UK (.co.uk) version. You can read about the plans at http://www.findmypast.co.uk/new-version-of-fmp-coming-soon. They are:

- a new technology platform
- new family tree builder
- improved search
- new records every month
- new website design
Along with the announcement there was also a post on the company blog Findmypast product update – Opening a dialogue with news of "a new tool, the findmypast Feedback Forum. The forum will allow you to share your thoughts and ideas about the site with us, as well as with other members of the findmypast community." On the forum you can suggest improvements and vote on those already suggested you'd like to see implemented.

3 comments:

Ian Barker said...

I subscribe to both Findmypast.uk and Findmypast.com, and I can't get a clear statement from them about how much duplication there is in content. One seems not to know how the other overlaps with it, or is releuctant to say.

Judy Webster said...

Ian Barker - in case this helps... there is a Webpage with a full list of datasets on FindMyPast.

Ian Barker said...

Thanks Judy.

I subscribe to Findmypast.com for the Aussie records. It's the overlap in British records with Findmypast.uk that I can't determine, I don't think without a significant effort. Queries to neither produced other then an opaque answer to that issue.

If between Ancestry World Explorer and Findmypast.com I had broad coverage of UK records, I'd drop Findmypast UK.