Benchmarking at Google Analytics
Google Analytics announced the launch of two new features - a beta version of industry benchmarking and a data-sharing settings page.
Industry benchmarking will enable customers to see how their site data compares to sites in any available industry vertical. Google believes this will "provide actionable insights by providing context for users to understand how their site is doing." Sites can also be compared against an industry vertical different than your own. Why would you want to do that? You might learn a little more about the seasonal traffic trends of your industry and the industries that are improving. This could help identify where cross-promotional opportunities exist that you can capitalize on when your own or your industry's traffic dips.
Benchmarking will only be available however if you're willing to share information about your site with the wider Web community - hence the release of the data-sharing settings page, which allows Google Analytics users to opt in or out of sharing there data. All data will be anonymous of course (Google essentially just aggregates the data into industry verticals). Those that elect to share their data will receive additional features within their accounts such as the integration of Conversion Optimizer.