Third Iron Usage Statistics

Modified on Fri, 19 Jul at 3:42 PM

Historically, Google Analytics was used to log usage data.  In 2022, usage data was migrated off Google Analytics and, as of May, usage data is being collected and stored by Third Iron.  Usage statistics are available upon request and at regular intervals (monthly, quarterly, annually) upon request.  You may request usage statistics, or sign up for a monthly report, by sending a message to

The below outlines in detail the metrics that are contained in the report, arranged by tab:


Provides a link back to this document.


This page provides the name of your institution, the date of the usage reported, and an at-a-glance summary of the usage data.  For libraries receiving automated monthly reports, this Summary section will include a column for data reported “This Month” and data reported “Year to Date.”  If a custom usage report covering a specific date range is requested, only one column of data corresponding to the date range requested will be listed.

Description of Individual Sections

All Third Iron Services Combined
Full Text Downloads
The total number of all Full Text Downloads requested through all Third Iron services, including LibKey Discovery and API Services, LibKey Link, LibKey Nomad, and BrowZine:
  • LibKey Discovery and API services refers most often to Discovery services that are LibKey enabled like Primo, Summon, EDS, OCLC Discovery, TDNet Discovery, VUFind.  Other third party services utilizing the LibKey API are also included such as Trip Database, and others listed at the bottom of this linked page. 
  • LibKey Link refers to the link resolver accelerator service commonly used by libraries wherever they might use a traditional link resolver like Google Scholar, PubMed, Scopus, Web of Science, EBSCO and ProQuest databases and more. More information on LibKey Link can be found here.
  • LibKey Nomad is the browser extensions that utilizes LibKey technology. This service can be installed by individuals on a variety of browsers and can be installed site-wide on managed computers by IT departments.
  • is a linking service that is utilized by a wide variety of third party services such as Semantic Scholar,, Citationsy and many others to provide easy linking to all LibKey subscribing libraries ensuring easy access to library materials from these various services.
Researcher Time Saved (in minutes)
Standard methods of accessing full text, such as using a link resolver, usually require users to navigate through confusing and time consuming steps:  reading menus, choosing sources, clicking through and waiting for webpages to load, and navigating different vendor sites. Libraries have reported this process can take up to a minute or more! BrowZine and LibKey, with fast, reliable, one-click access to millions of library subscribed and Open Access articles, save researchers an average of 45 seconds each time they download an article. The Researcher Time Saved metric, then, is the sum of full text downloads multiplied by 45 seconds and helps estimate how much time you are saving your researcher community.

% of Full Text Downloads Open Access

This is a summary calculation (discussed in detail on the "Full Text Downloads" tab) of the % of downloads that were of articles that are open access.  All of these downloads represent Version of Record (VoR) Open Access articles.  Third Iron services can provide linking to Accepted Manuscript versions as well within certain contexts but for this metric only Version of Record is considered.  This is thus designed to provide a "true equivalency" between the amount of content that requires a subscription versus that which does not.

Full Text Download Detail
Breakout of the full text downloads as recorded by the Third Iron services LibKey Discovery and API Services, LibKey Link, LibKey Nomad, and BrowZine.  Combined, the total full text downloads across these services will equal the full text downloads reported in the “All Third Iron Services Combined” Summary section.

LibKey Nomad Metrics

Google Scholar searches enhanced

The affiliation of a user to a particular library's link resolver links in Google Scholar requires the user to either by doing a search from within an organization's IP range *or* to sign into Google and then manually affiliate themselves to a particular institution by using the Settings function and searching for their organization.  A user with LibKey Nomad installed and set for their Library does not need to do either of these things!  Nomad will automatically associate them with their library so that link resolver links appear with Google Scholar search results.  This metric tracks the number of searches in which this operation takes place, thereby enhancing the Google Scholar experience by providing holdings and linking information specific to your library within the display.

BrowZine Metrics
My Bookshelf Views (Web) & (Native iOS and Android)
The total number of times a user clicks a journal on his or her My Bookshelf, while using the BrowZine web, iOS or Android application.  This metric is tallied, in either row as appropriate for the platform where it occurred, when a user clicks from My Bookshelf into a particular journal.

Table of Contents Views (Web) & (Native iOS and Android)
The total number of times a user views a journal table of contents in BrowZine, either directly from the BrowZine application or when following the “Article in Content/View Complete Issue” link displayed in discovery services, LibKey Nomad, and

In-Context Linking from LibKey Services

This metric is tallied every time a user clicks on an in-context link from a LibKey Service which results in a linkage to BrowZine.  In most services this is called "View Issue Contents" or "View full Issue".  This functionality brings context an article level intelligence to searching contexts (discovery systems, indexes, etc.) and allows the user to browse articles published at the same time in the same issue as the article of interest.

My Bookshelf

With BrowZine, users may create their own bookshelves to easily find, follow, and read their favorite journal titles. The numbers reported in My Bookshelf indicate how many times a user has clicked on a journal saved to My Bookshelf in order to view the tables of contents along with the ISSN/EISSN of those titles. Note this data is not a metric of the number of times that journal appears on all user's bookshelves, but instead indicates interactions with that content in the BrowZine environment.  When the metric instead says the journal is "(Assorted Journals)" this indicates that a My Bookshelf interaction occurred that affects multiple journals - such as renaming a bookshelf or moving a journal from one bookshelf to another.

TOC Views

Scanning tables of contents is one of the primary ways researchers report how they stay current with research in their fields. BrowZine reports how many journal tables of contents have been viewed, providing a unique way to understand how users are benefiting from your collection. Both the journal's title and ISSN/EISSN are provided.

Full Text Downloads

This reports how many full text articles downloads were initiated using BrowZine and LibKey and from which journals, along with the ISSN/EISSN for each title. Please note that full text downloads is not a COUNTER metric as Third Iron is not a publisher and does not provide the full text for any journals, but instead links to publisher platforms to download the full text.

This tab also features Open access data broken down by journal.  The summary % is also repeated from the summary tab.  This detail provides a real-world assessment about a particular library's usage of open access articles from each journal to help inform patterns of user behavior and collection development decisions.  All open access figures presented are for Version of Record open access only. Third Iron services can provide linking to Accepted Manuscript versions as well within certain contexts but for this metric only Version of Record is considered. This is thus designed to provide a "true equivalency" between the amount of content that requires a subscription versus that which does not.

Additionally, this open access detail reveals an additional benefit to LibKey link resolution: journals may appear in this list that are outside of a library's subscription!  This is because even if there is no known subscription to a title, LibKey's unique article level intelligence identifies that a particular article has a Version of Record available and so instantly links the user in a seamless manner.  The net result of this is an expanded set of content for users!