I am trying to decide if I should show my stats publicly on my website. During the decision-making process I have come up with the following pros and cons of doing so. If you have anything to contribute to the subject, please do.
Pros: Graphs and numbers would be interesting to some users. More things for the user to see/do on the website which should keep them there longer. Users might visit other pages when they see that they get a lot of hits. Wow factor (the format my stats are in is pretty neat).
Cons: Competitors will know where my traffic comes from. Competitors will know what my top content is and be able to duplicate it.
Personally I take stats as very confidential and would not display them. In fact, I do not provide exact stats even for potential advertisers, it keeps the fishing expeditions down and advetisers can collect their own data anyway.
As far as some kind of implied quality due to popularity, just use hyperbole like 'thousands of visitors a month' or 'the top site in our industry'.
I would agree with Jon_King. 'Advertise' your stats, but only in very vauge terms such as 'we had over 20,000 visitors last month'.
However that would only really be interesting to potential advertisers, so I wouldn't slap it all across the front page. And certainly don't advertise which are your most popular pages, that's just asking for them to be copied by your competitors!