Alternative metrics or altmetrics refer to different ways of measuring the use and impact of scholarly works. Besides using citations counts, researchers are able to capture a more complete picture of scholarly impact by analysing the usage of other avenues of communications such as social media, social bookmarking, views and downloads. One recent tool which is known to be more than just altmetrics and includes more sources of metrics than any other altmetrics provider is PlumX Metrics by Plum Analytics.
PlumX Metrics is a comprehensive, item-level metrics that provide insights into the ways people interact with individual pieces of research output such as articles, conference proceedings, book chapters, etc. in the online environment. In other words, PlumX Metrics gathers and brings together appropriate research metrics for all types of scholarly research output.
PlumX Metrics is a subscription-based platform for tracking research impact. It allows developers to create their own metrics dashboards and embed PlumX metrics into their websites and applications. More information is available from Plum Analytics' official webiste.
This colourful image popularly known as a Plum Print or Plum Badge is a “widget” that represents PlumX Metrics. The PlumX Metrics widget provides metrics that allow searchers to visualize the research impact of articles, books, chapters, e-books and institutional repository materials. This widget provides some interesting and insightful information regarding the scholarly attention surrounding that particular citation.
The categories of metrics are displayed for quick and easy understanding in a data visualization. The 5 coloured circles represent 5 categories of metrics: Usage (green), Captures (purple), Mentions (yellow), Social Media (blue) and Citations (orange).The colours on the widget change depending on the altmetrics found in each of the 5 categories. If more altmetrics data is found in a certain category for an article, the more pronounced the colour is shown in the widget. In other words, the larger the circle, the more metrics in that category. Hovering over the PlumX Metrics widget provides a brief visual breakdown of the altmetrics. You can also click on it to get to all the detail for the metrics.
PlumX Metrics give researchers deeper knowledge of how their work is being used and communicated and offer robust insights into the societal impact of their work and that of their peers.
One of the key benefits of PlumX Metrics is their timeliness, measuring the performance of an article early in the research cycle before citations have had a chance to accrue.
They are also agile, adjusting to changes in technology and the behavioural shifts that go with them, faster than many of their citation-based counterparts.
PlumX Metrics help tell the story of research by providing new and different insights about how people are interacting with scholarly work, offering fresh perspectives that are not available via more traditional measurement criteria.