Background: When you add a bounty to a question, it appears on the featured questions list. However, depending on the timing, the featured questions page can be multiple pages long. So for about half the bounty period, your question is near the bottom of the featured list. There isn't much we could do about that, but it is relevant to how effective bounties are. I also notice, that when a question gets a bounty, the amount of views goes up way more than the number of answers. Almost as though, the quality, or experience level, of the viewers goes down.
Questions: Are there any statistics on the differences between bounty question "popularity" and regular question "popularity". Specifically, what are the comparisons between answer amounts, view counts, and acceptance percentages? Ultimately, are bounties worth their cost? If not, how do you make them worth it? Are there alternative things we can do?
(Edit: I've focused this question so it doesn't bring up other topics)