Google & eBay on a Collision Course

Google and eBay had a staring contest in the last few days, which resulted in eBay winning a round against Google.

TechCrunch has a great summary of what happened:

    1. eBay doesn’t allow merchants to use Google Checkout to settle eBay transactions. Google invited eBay online sellers attending eBay Live! in Boston this week to a party that they called the Google Checkout Freedom Party.
    2. eBay decides to pull all U.S. advertising on Google.
    3. Google backs down, cancels the party.

    What it means: eBay is the biggest Google AdWords advertiser (which might be worth more than $100 million in revenues for Google). According to this SF Chronicle article, “EBay’s ads showed up on Google 188.3 million times in March, according to comScore Networks, more than double the number run by Target, the No. 2 Google advertiser.” and I think that does not include Shopping.com numbers. You should never underestimate the power of any of your coopetitors. If you’re coopeting with another large organization, be careful not to disrupt the delicate equilibrium, unless you’re prepared to go to war.

Google & eBay on a Collision Course

Google and eBay had a staring contest in the last few days, which resulted in eBay winning a round against Google.

TechCrunch has a great summary of what happened:

    1. eBay doesn’t allow merchants to use Google Checkout to settle eBay transactions. Google invited eBay online sellers attending eBay Live! in Boston this week to a party that they called the Google Checkout Freedom Party.
    2. eBay decides to pull all U.S. advertising on Google.
    3. Google backs down, cancels the party.

    What it means: eBay is the biggest Google AdWords advertiser (which might be worth more than $100 million in revenues for Google). According to this SF Chronicle article, “EBay’s ads showed up on Google 188.3 million times in March, according to comScore Networks, more than double the number run by Target, the No. 2 Google advertiser.” and I think that does not include Shopping.com numbers. You should never underestimate the power of any of your coopetitors. If you’re coopeting with another large organization, be careful not to disrupt the delicate equilibrium, unless you’re prepared to go to war.

How Weather.com Became the Eight-Most-Trafficked Media Site and What This Means for Directory Publishers

Adage.com discusses how Weather.com (The Weather Channel’s web site) managed to become the eight-most-visited media site with 37.8 million unique visitors (March 2007, Nielsen/NetRatings).

1) Focused on one thing, weather, and the URL brand says it all.

2) “It’s primarily a reference site, a genre that does very well online”.

3) Search engine optimization (SEO) and marketing. “Lately it has seen its distribution through widgets growing as well.”

The article adds that Weather.com ranks eighth in mobile search according to M:Metrics.

What it means: if I put this article in the context of directory publishing, this makes me think that there’s no reason why a directory publisher could not see its traffic explode through smart strategic online moves. Directories are reference sites and they usually focus on one thing: finding a person or finding a business. Those are things you do multiple times during one week. But I think one of the killer apps directory publishers have is their residential search (this might come as a shock to many people!). “Find a Person” is like weather information! This is clearly a under-exploited segment today (under-exploited by directory publishers) and could serve as a locomotive to increase local business searches. But you’d need to have strong SEO and syndicate your “find a person” content via widgets and other affiliate programs.

Industry News: Agendize, Mobivox, ClearSense

A potluck of industry news this morning:

Agendize previewed some usage data in their latest newsletter regarding increased call volume when click-to-call is combined with a click-to-save functionality. According to their release, “a major European online directory publisher who recently added AgendiZe Click-to-Call to the already-implemented Click-to-Save & Share options experienced a 90% call volume increase in the January – March time frame compared to the last three months of 2006”.

ClearSense, a subsidiary of World Directories, announced a strategic alliance with LocalLaunch!, a subsidiary of RHD, to help World Directories sell SEM products to their SMEs.

Mobivox, a Montreal-based mobile application company, announced the beta launch of its hosted service that allows people to bring Skype to any mobile device without downloads. The service is now available in 23 countries.