Traffick - The Business of Search Engines & Web Portals
Blog Categories (aka Tags) Archive of Traffick Articles Our Internet Marketing Consulting Services Contact the Traffickers Traffick RSS Feed

Friday, October 22, 2004

Judge Not

GOOG's strong third quarter may be setting an unattainably high standard in the minds of investors and armchair critics. How would you like to be an Internet startup right now, generating losses, being judged based on some freakishly profitable model that one company stumbled into half by accident?

Google's own early balance sheets probably didn't look all that pretty, either. But what they did for the first four years of the company's life (and oh what a first four years they were) was to focus on building a company that mattered to people. Google's search market share appears to be over 50% in every market in the world. Without that, none of this would have happened.

Right now, there are tens of thousands of startups working away, innovating, trying to build companies and products that matter to people. It would be a shame if investors and observers tried to rush them to maturity or profitability.

Posted by Andrew | | | Permalink

Subscribe: RSS/XML | +My Yahoo | +Newsgator | +Bloglines | +Rojo

 

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Fraud, Schmaud

It's official: click fraud is now a "scourge". Of course it exists, but the extent of the problem is being blown out of proportion. It's easy to see why. When you're busy building campaigns, you don't have time to fixate on issues like this. You take care of a lot of annoying problems and roadblocks in the process of building something that works. When it's your job to write about business, on the other hand, you can skim the surface and refer generally to trends, unwittingly magnifying their importance to the casual observer.

The level of outrage that companies are spending "tens of millions of dollars on customers that don't exist" is something to behold, especially given the long history of advertising methods which are completely unverifiable. What about those piles of free newspapers you see in lobbies? Might those be added to "circulation" figures? Are people really watching TV ads nowadays? How can we be sure?

I'm going to start a new service (let's call it AdNazi) designed to put a stop to all this "attention fraud." When one of my AdNazi(TM) spies catches a motorist not eyeing a certain billboard with interest, we'll force them off the road and scream: "Look!!!!!"

We at AdNazi(TM) feel your pain. Attention fraud is costing America's corporations billions of dollars. It must be stopped.

Malicious and fake clicks are indeed fraudulent, and their perpetrators ought to be jailed. But let's not be too amazed by the notion that advertisers are flushing a lot of money down the toilet on methodologies that might not be 100% bulletproof. Next to "shooter girls" offering test tubes of colored liquid to already-inebriated males in dimly-lit clubs, paid search advertising is the most trackable, targeted form of marketing ever invented.

Posted by Andrew | | | Permalink

Subscribe: RSS/XML | +My Yahoo | +Newsgator | +Bloglines | +Rojo

 

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

You're Either With Us or Against Us

Google AdWords, which is already partnered with AOL for sponsored listings in North America, will displace Overture on AOL Europe. The deal is for "more than one year."

Posted by Andrew | | | Permalink

Subscribe: RSS/XML | +My Yahoo | +Newsgator | +Bloglines | +Rojo

 

Through AJ Interactive, Ask Jeeves Offers 'Premier Listings'

Ask Jeeves' reorganized sales unit, AJ Interactive, will begin selling ads in a number of formats and attempt to grow its current advertiser base of 1,000 (relationships formed earlier by Jeeves' recent acquisition, ISH Holdings).

In reviewing the available ad exposure, the first thing I did was check out their PDF on 'premium search listings.' It appears that these will be keyword-triggered ads featured at the top of the search listings. A single "premier" listing will appear above the sponsored Google AdWords results, which in turn appear above web results.

Jeeves management expressed what we were already thinking... in the form of a denial that there is any competition with or change in the relationship with Google. According to the DMNews story, the new head of the division, Jim Diaz, had this to say:

"I'd like to see us grow as a percentage of revenue of Ask Jeeves over time. Does that mean we have to take money away from Google on the search pages? We don't have to do that at all."

Since the top listing gets clicked a high percentage of the time, and carries the highest cost per click, of course this move will "take money away from Google on the search pages."

The impact on advertisers is slightly annoying in that it adds another vendor to deal with. But larger advertisers may like it because they can lock down top spot.

It's tough to speculate what this says about the relationship between Google and Ask Jeeves. But what it does suggest is that Jeeves management is trying to make the best use of personnel they picked up in the recent acquisition. Ad salespeople had to be tasked with increasing Jeeves' revenues by working directly with more advertisers.

Posted by Andrew | | | Permalink

Subscribe: RSS/XML | +My Yahoo | +Newsgator | +Bloglines | +Rojo

 

Monday, October 18, 2004

Or They Could Be Just Surfing for Porn

Some observers would still like to believe that Google people are burning the midnight oil working on a browser.

Posted by Andrew | | | Permalink

Subscribe: RSS/XML | +My Yahoo | +Newsgator | +Bloglines | +Rojo

 

Sunday, October 17, 2004

What's Selling, Where -- Amazon's Micro-Bestseller Lists

It's like open-sourcing market research. Like psychographics for the masses. It's Amazon's new "What's Selling, Where" lists.

Not only can you get bestseller lists for certain locales by geography (states, cities), but also (if enough data are generated) specific organizations, businesses, and university campuses.

A quick peek at what the kids at UT Austin or the University of Wisconsin are buying indicates that they're interested in politics, weight loss, and popular page-turners... not necessarily in that order.

A bit more research reveals... that's pretty much what everyone else is interested in, too. (Check out Dallas, for example.)

To get additional insight, one can click on "uniquely popular" as opposed to top-selling, which presumably highlights books that are considerably more popular in a certain subgroup than they are everywhere else.

A peek inside the federal judicial branch's buying habits suggests that while they're as happy to guffaw along with Al Franken as anyone, and do enjoy a good page-turner, they're feeling the middle-class pinch, being uniquely interested in a book called The Two-Income Trap by a Harvard law professor and bankruptcy expert and her daughter, a former McKinsey consultant.
Overconsumption is not blamed for the current squeeze on middle class and upper-middle class cash flow. Rather, it's the "ferocious bidding wars for housing and education" that are causing a cash crunch in America's suburbs. While lower income earners might run up the credit card for nice-looking "stuff," and get into trouble that way, the two-income "achievers" find themselves underwater because of their insistence on living in status neighborhoods so that they can send their children to better schools. Probably a book that takes on magnified significance in a credit-boom time where an unprecedented number of gainfully-employed middle-income earners have had no trouble finding a bank to help them buy "too much house," and then find themselves facing bankruptcy when unexpected costs or job loss crop up.

But that's neither here nor there. I think I'm supposed to be making a point about what might be significant about Amazon's initiative. In keeping with the way Amazon has always worked, the micro-bestseller-lists release us from the shackles of the Big Bestseller List or the Anointed Book Reviewer, allowing one to browse what people are buying in different circles, and being offered peripheral recommendations to related books as always. Reading real people's reviews, and possibly reading other reviews by those reviewers, allows one to probe a topic deeply in the space of a couple of minutes. And you can, of course, search inside the book. In a word, the buyer is empowered.

By comparison, most of the bookstores I visit seem almost embarrassed by books. I mean they carry so few of them. Unlike most people, I don't find the process of visiting today's bookstore soothing or retro or quaint. It's just a lousy user experience. Most recently I had time to kill before a party, so browsed the business area of a Chapters. I couldn't find any of the titles I'd been considering buying, and, of course, there was no *context* in the form of reviews, rankings, and other information. But I did buy some chocolates to bring to my hosts.

Amazon's practice of displaying these various consumer tastes to the world in such a "micro" way might raise privacy concerns for some, especially those whose purchases are clearly identified with their place of work. It will be interesting to hear that debate.

All in all, a tour around what's selling on Amazon.com is heartening in its diversity and richness... until you realize that the sample is restricted to people who actually buy and read books.

Posted by Andrew | | | Permalink

Subscribe: RSS/XML | +My Yahoo | +Newsgator | +Bloglines | +Rojo

 

View Recent Posts

 

Speaking Engagement

I am speaking at SMX West

Need Solid Advice?        

Google AdWords book


Andrew's book, Winning Results With Google AdWords, (McGraw-Hill, 2nd ed.), is still helping tens of thousands of advertisers cut through the noise and set a solid course for campaign ROI.

And for a glowing review of the pioneering 1st ed. of the book, check out this review, by none other than Google's Matt Cutts.


Posts from 2002 to 2010


07/2002
08/2002
09/2002
10/2002
11/2002
12/2002
01/2003
02/2003
03/2003
04/2003
05/2003
06/2003
07/2003
08/2003
09/2003
10/2003
11/2003
12/2003
01/2004
02/2004
03/2004
04/2004
05/2004
06/2004
07/2004
08/2004
09/2004
10/2004
11/2004
12/2004
01/2005
02/2005
03/2005
04/2005
05/2005
06/2005
07/2005
08/2005
09/2005
10/2005
11/2005
12/2005
01/2006
02/2006
03/2006
04/2006
05/2006
06/2006
07/2006
08/2006
09/2006
10/2006
11/2006
12/2006
01/2007
02/2007
03/2007
04/2007
05/2007
06/2007
07/2007
08/2007
09/2007
10/2007
11/2007
12/2007
01/2008
02/2008
03/2008
04/2008
05/2008
06/2008
07/2008
08/2008
09/2008
10/2008
11/2008
12/2008
01/2009
02/2009
03/2009
04/2009
05/2009
06/2009
07/2009
08/2009
09/2009
10/2009
11/2009
12/2009
01/2010
02/2010
03/2010
04/2010
Traffick Blog Archive ::
June 30, 2002
July 21, 2002
July 28, 2002
August 04, 2002
August 25, 2002
September 01, 2002
September 08, 2002
September 15, 2002
September 22, 2002
September 29, 2002
October 06, 2002
October 13, 2002
October 20, 2002
October 27, 2002
November 03, 2002
November 10, 2002
November 17, 2002
November 24, 2002
December 01, 2002
December 15, 2002
December 22, 2002
December 29, 2002
January 05, 2003
January 12, 2003
January 19, 2003
January 26, 2003
February 02, 2003
February 09, 2003
February 16, 2003
February 23, 2003
March 02, 2003
March 09, 2003
March 16, 2003
March 23, 2003
March 30, 2003
April 06, 2003
April 13, 2003
April 20, 2003
April 27, 2003
May 04, 2003
May 11, 2003
May 18, 2003
May 25, 2003
June 01, 2003
June 08, 2003
June 15, 2003
June 22, 2003
June 29, 2003
July 06, 2003
July 13, 2003
July 20, 2003
July 27, 2003
August 03, 2003
August 10, 2003
August 17, 2003
August 24, 2003
August 31, 2003
September 07, 2003
September 14, 2003
September 21, 2003
September 28, 2003
October 05, 2003
October 12, 2003
October 19, 2003
October 26, 2003
November 02, 2003
November 09, 2003
November 16, 2003
November 23, 2003
November 30, 2003
December 07, 2003
December 14, 2003
December 21, 2003
December 28, 2003
January 04, 2004
January 11, 2004
January 18, 2004
January 25, 2004
February 01, 2004
February 08, 2004
February 15, 2004
February 22, 2004
February 29, 2004
March 07, 2004
March 14, 2004
March 21, 2004
March 28, 2004
April 04, 2004
April 11, 2004
April 18, 2004
April 25, 2004
May 02, 2004
May 09, 2004
May 16, 2004
May 23, 2004
May 30, 2004
June 06, 2004
June 13, 2004
June 20, 2004
June 27, 2004
July 11, 2004
July 18, 2004
July 25, 2004
August 01, 2004
August 08, 2004
August 15, 2004
August 22, 2004
August 29, 2004
September 05, 2004
September 12, 2004
September 19, 2004
September 26, 2004
October 03, 2004
October 10, 2004
October 17, 2004
October 24, 2004
October 31, 2004
November 07, 2004
November 14, 2004
November 21, 2004
November 28, 2004
December 05, 2004
December 12, 2004
December 19, 2004
January 02, 2005
January 09, 2005
January 16, 2005
January 23, 2005
January 30, 2005
February 06, 2005
February 13, 2005
February 20, 2005
February 27, 2005
March 06, 2005
March 13, 2005
March 20, 2005
March 27, 2005
April 03, 2005
April 10, 2005
April 17, 2005
April 24, 2005
May 01, 2005
May 08, 2005
May 15, 2005
May 22, 2005
May 29, 2005
June 05, 2005
June 12, 2005
June 19, 2005
June 26, 2005
July 03, 2005
July 10, 2005
July 17, 2005
July 24, 2005
July 31, 2005
August 07, 2005
August 14, 2005
August 21, 2005
August 28, 2005
September 04, 2005
September 11, 2005
September 18, 2005
September 25, 2005
October 02, 2005
October 09, 2005
October 16, 2005
October 23, 2005
October 30, 2005
November 06, 2005
November 13, 2005
November 20, 2005
November 27, 2005

 


Traffick - The Business of Search Engines & Web Portals

 


Home | Categories | Archive | About Us | Internet Marketing Consulting | Contact Us
© 1999 - 2013 Traffick.com. All Rights Reserved