Archive for January, 2007

Wikia - a serious Google competitor?

Wikia Is Wikia the next Google killer or just one of many
new search engines out there?

After my friend Marshall over at Webmetricsguru (a must read webanalytics blog!) gave me the tip about a speech of Jimmy Wales at NYU, I headed out of the office leaving all the crap behind and joined a session with famous Jimmy Wales - founder of Wikia.com - the new community driven search engine.

The event was hosted by the Freeculture at NYU organziation and was also co-sponsored by NYU’s ACM and NYU’s WinC chapters.

Jimmy started with his first successful project Wikipedia and moved pretty quickly on to Wikia. His new idea is a free and democratic search engine, that even publishes it’s Algos. A pure community driven seach, that could bring higher relevancy than Google, Yahoo or MSN.

After listening to him, I was suprised about his knowledge. He is really smart and has deep knowledge of what is going on in the internet world. Still I believe his search engine will never take off and compete seriously with Google or other major engines.

My reasons:

1.Competition. Wikia competes against a billion $ industry. The internet has evolved and Google and others are able to deliver relevant results. If Wikias traffic rises, Google and others will tweak their Algos so the majority won’t even hear about Wikia. Evil yes, but in this business is too much money.

2. Content. The wisdom of the crowd is always a good way to grab quality content. Still I believe a search engine is something completely different than a “content directory” (like wikipedia). Once wikia is popular, it will be spammed and scammed on an hourly basis. Already today smart guys started writing articles and building trust in Wikia. DMOZ and Wikipedia flaws should show what human “editors” are able to do.

3. Search is personal. Every human is different and has different taste. If I am looking for an apartment, I might want a safe place with a broker. My neighbor prefers a free listing from Craigslist. Where does Wikia start? Who decides what ranks first? Personalization is the future and I just cannot see Wikia anywhere.

4. Second tier search engines technology. According to Jimmy second tier search engines approached him. They wanted to cooperate, but Wikia wants to open the algos. Cooperations, which could be a fast way of integrating technology seem kind of impossible. Wikia needs to launch a search engine from scratch.

5. Disclaimer: I am born and raised in Germany. “We” build Beamers, Mercedes and invented MP3. Still we are born not believe in great ideas like Jimbos. So take my opinion and discount my German genes. Now you are probably convinced by Wikia :-)

Despite all my points about Wikia this was a great event. I really appreciate the entire NYU team to make this a public and free event! The NYU team had the ability to make me remember the great days in school.

What I forgot…my stalker photos (click to enlarge) of Jim Wales. After leaving the event I also met my “old friend” Will Smith jumping out of his car at Washington Square Park. He never told me that he is a Webanalyst ;-)

Jimmy Jimbo willi1.jpg

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Coremetrics adds automated bidding

Coremetrics Search 2007 integrates comprehensive LIVE Profiles data and granular keyword analysis with automated bidding and support for Yahoo! V2 online advertising platform

The new version of Coremetrics Search is the first paid search management application to fully integrate automated bidding with in-depth analysis, powered by Coremetrics LIVE Profiles, so that the entire search marketing program can be managed from within a single interface. The company has added a comprehensive Campaign Landing Page Report and detailed Keyword Zoom features to help marketers increase the relevance of their programs. It has also introduced an automated bid management system, which reduces the administrative burden of search management, allowing marketers to focus on more valuable, revenue-generating activities.
Big Big steps for Coremetrics. An integrated bid mangement is what everybody is looking for. SEM, SEO and Webanalytics are one big field! No matter what David Pasternack or others say. Depending on the quality of Comscore’s new tool, Atlas bid management just added one more serious competitor. 

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VisiStat honored with CyberStar® Most Innovative Product award

Visistat VisiStat was the honored recipient of the inaugural CyberStar® Most Innovative Product award.

It was presented in recognition of VisiStat’s unique technical approach in Website reporting, link tracking and Web analytics tools and its applications for the real estate industry.

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SAS wins Best Data Mining Toolset, Webtrends best webanalytics tool award

SAS Analytics Readers’ Choice Awards: SAS voted best data
mining toolset. Webtrends wins best webanalytics tool
award.

Best Web Analytics Winner: WebTrends
Runner-Up: TeaLeaf Technology

Best Data Mining or Statistical Analysis Winner: SAS
Runner-Up: SPSS

Best Text Mining Software Winner: IBM
Runner-Up: SAS

Best Data Visualization Software Winner: IBM
Runner-Up: Visual Insights

Read the rest of this entry »

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World wrestling webanalyst needed

WWE webanalyst WWE seeks a senior webanalyst in Stamford.

WWE seeks a Senior Manager, Web Analytics to join
the “team: of professionals.This individual will be responsible for
collecting, analyzing, reporting, and presenting all statistics
associated with the company’s web site, e-commerce site(s), campaigns
and initiatives.

hulkhogan.jpg

I guess wrestling skills are not necessary, but check it out. It really looks like an interesting position. It is certainly another proof that the webanalytics industry desperately needs people.

More jobs can be found in our webanalytics job board

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Hittail - the long tail optimizer

Hittail Hittail - the long tail optimizer that provides
suggestions to boost natural search

Hittail is a great and free tool that tracks your organic traffic and recommends topics that you or your editorial team should write about in order to boost your search engine traffic.

Hittail also offers premium services that include

  • Competitive Analysis
  • Natural vs. Paid Search Comparison
  • Traditional Search Engine Optimization
  • Dynamic Database Optimization
  • Automatic Media Monitoring
  • Writing Assistance
  • Wiki Documentation on Search Philosophies
  • Archived Weekly Reporting and Metrics
  • Monthly Metrics
  • Conversion Tracking

Hittail is well done and any website which has the intention of making profit, should at least install the free beta version. I definitely will use the tool on one corporate site and write about it when it is time for that. It will take a least a few weeks so the tool can aggregate enough data from the engines.

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Quantcast - the Alexa killer

Quantcast Quantcast is a powerful and new web measurement tool
with high potential.

Quantcast targets all kind of publishers and advertisers. It has been developed by a team of web analytics experts, that is supported by big name scientists from Stanford. What is the most interesting about Quantcast is it’s approach of collecting data. Quantcast uses data from advertisers, publishers, ISPs and advertising networks. To help this service to be as accurate as possible, Quantcast also provides a javascript to web publishers. This distinguishes them clearly from competitors like Compete or Alexa, which collect their data from ISPs and via toolbar.

Quancast also provides more stats than anybody else and I really enjoyed using their (US) demographics data. Household income or age can be very valuable tools, especially for niche websites and advertisers.
Also the similar audience data can be a great help for SEO and business development efforts. Besides this great new approach, it is sad, that the tool is currently only available for 20,099,109 US websites. Still, they just started about 3 months ago and I believe that this tool is the most advanced free web measurement tool that is currently on the US market. Let’s hope that this will incite the established web measurement vendors to improve their services.

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Public visitor tracking function is a cash cow

The first time I saw “public visitor tracking” on the popular European business network Xing. Members of Xing are able to track pretty much everything:

Members who recently visited my profile
Members whose profile I visited recently
Members who recently clicked the Homepage of one of my former companies
Members who recently viewed my “About me” page

Cashcow

Second time I heard about public visitor tracking occured, when Vbulletin, one of the largest forum software providers, offered a modification script called Who Viewed My Profile .

Third time it was Match.com, which upgraded their service with “Reverse hotlist” functions.The latest developments are Mybloglog, which opened up the public visitor tracking to blogs (see below right).

Read the rest of this entry »

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Visitorville - a fun way to track your website

Visitorville is the funniest way to look at
your webanalytics data.

Visitorville is certainly a fun webanalytics solution, that never gets boring.
The hosted or downloadable software allows you to see your stats in a 2-D or
true 3-D environment. Real time.

Visitorville supports dozens of statistics as well as a browser overlay functionality.
What I especially like about the product is an integrated live help and chat.
Another software piece, which is outstanding is Visitorville’s sales conversion
visualization.

conversion.gif


The pricing is extremly fair and I would recommend this software to run at the
company lobby on a big flat screen TV. It is not only entertaining, but also
a great motivator to see “buyers” walking around. 

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Rumors: MSN Adcenter editor software

Lately many rumors occur…This time
about a downloadable MSN adcenter software

After a friend of mine had a bunch of MSN senior guys in his office today, he overheard them talking about some Adcenter software, which is pretty much and equivalent to the popular Google Adwords editor product.

First of all I would not post this rumor, but after digging an old MSN [Jan.2006] press release, I am convinced that this is true.

[MSN] adLab’s top-notch group of more than 50 researchers will develop advertising solutions that connect marketers with consumers in more relevant, innovative ways unseen in the industry before now. Today at the adCenter Demo Fest on the Microsoft campus, the researchers gathered to present prototypes of more than 15 of the approximately 40 advertising technologies they are currently working on for long-term implementation, including online advertising solutions, video opportunities, and television and mobile-based advertising products.

Update: MSN Demo Fest 17th January 2007:

Developed by the rapidly growing team of more than 120 Microsoft adCenter Labs researchers and engineers, technologies displayed on Wednesday are all designed to help provide the best advertising experiences for users, advertisers and developers. They include the following:

Keyword Services Platform: The platform provides a set of Web service APIs related to keyword technologies, including keyword recommendation, forecasting, categorisation and monetisation, enabling developers to build more intelligent applications for online advertising and beyond.”

Not much info from the offical site, except that they stocked up with engineers to about 120. So some of the new guys might work on that stuff. If it is true that MSN comes out with their own tool, it would be another slap in Yahoo’s face. I am not sure what Yahoo is doing right now, but it seems that the other 2 big competitors take search advertising way more serious.

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