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Is Your Website Alive? January 13, 2009

Posted by simarprit in : Uncategorized , 1 comment so far

What kind of website do you have? Your choices are: Alive and Kicking, Alive and Living, Alive and Sleeping, Alive but in Coma, Dead.

Alive and Kicking: Alive and Kicking are those websites which get updated every minute 60×60, 24×7.

Alive and Living: Websites which get updated at least once every hour.

Alive and Sleeping: Oh! They are updated once a day.

Alive but in Coma: If a site is updated once a week, but every week

Dead: Yes, if your site doesn’t get new content for a week, it is dead.

This is the new definition of websites, this is the new Internet order. UGC, social networking, aggregated, publisher based, syndicated – whatever you call it, to be in business you need to ensure that you are alive and kicking. The fact that you get traffic every minute is no longer sufficient. Do you have something new to offer every minute, this what holds the key to dream millions and billions.

Christmas Carnivals December 16, 2008

Posted by simarprit in : Christmas, Festivals, websites , add a comment

How do you name a site, Simar?  Why did you name your Valentine site – MyDearValentine.com? Why did you name your Christmas Site Christmas Carnivals and why not Christmas XYZ or XYZ Christmas  http://christmascarnivals.com – Questions like this are put at me very often> My answer – There is a lot to naming a site and I take my job of naming a site seriously.

Let me be in the spirit of Christmas and state the story of naming of Christmas Carnivals and why it is plural and not singular.

Every year since 1941 the downtown New Delhi, referred as Connaught Place plays host to a Christmas Carnival and is all decked up for the Christmas. To us the festival of Diwali is associated with Mela, so Compare went ahead and developed a site DiwaliMela.com and as Christmas had a strong association with Carnival we desired to keep the name Christmas Carnival, however the registrar’s representative did a mistake and booked ChristmasCarnivals.com instead. By the time we realized what had happened, the name was gone.  We did go ahead and block other extension .net but decided to stick with ChristmasCarnivals.com – we worked further to evolve CC as we refer it to, as the single largets place for information about Christmas. There was a big learning to do, and we did go through the whole exercise of understanding Christmas and the festivities around it.

Though the site came up in 1999, it was only in 2007 – did I actually get to see the real Christmas Carnival when I was in the United States around Christmas time. The inputs I gathered were put by the team to great use and we worked on improving CC.

I am proud of the fact that ChristmasCarnivals.com has emerged as the leading Christmas site and about a million souls from all over the world stop at ChristmasCarnivals.com.

So there is a lot  to a name provided you can live to it.

So my 2 cents: Keep the domain name exactly what you want the site to be.

Beauty Tips Hub Races Ahead December 12, 2008

Posted by simarprit in : Uncategorized , add a comment

When I was introduced to this young boy, I instinctively knew we would go a long way together.

The journey has just begun and it is very exciting. When raghav “introduced” me to a site which Compare owned (Yes, I know – I am the founder of Compare Infobase) I was thrilled. It was a great subject, great geography and we had a great name in http://www.beautytipshub.com – we couldn’t have gone wrong and we didn’t. The site did 1600 uniques today – all organic. It is the fastest ramp-up I’ve seen in along time.

Some thoughts on why we have done so well in Beauty Tips Hub:

1. Raghav had done good reserach
2. Beauty is universal
3. We knew our job

More to come…

Designing for Communities September 19, 2008

Posted by simarprit in : Uncategorized , add a comment

Designing for Communities -Web 2.0 Expo -New York

David Karp & Avi Muchnick

  1. You are different and you look different, don’t confuse us with something which has been seen before and make a notion about what we are. The challenge of establishing your look and feel and building a design case around you.
  2. You have to sell yourself to the user for the user to be convinced that he wins by engaging on your site, your design has to communicate ease of success to the user and the fact that you care for them.
  3. Ultimately content quality is your responsibility and you are answerable for the quality of your content. You need to understand your communities profile and preferences while designing your framework and layout. Participative approach towards quality monitoring is necessary. Defining boundaries of content creation and management is important for communities, community members should know what is good and what is not.
  4. User feedback needs to be prioritized and measured against your broader vision, community feedback is important, but don’t dilute what you believe would work over what the users talk about. Segregating user feedback and looking behind the motive may not be an evil thing to do.
  5. Design should encourage participation, and curb negativity. Hearing whispers would ensure that “ït sucks” messages just don’t get written.
  6. How do you get people to accept UI changes. Make your existing users choose what they want give them choice till they change over to the new one anyway. Let them understand the new interface is better, maybe underplay the existing page and down-sell it, tweak it to maybe, sub-perform. Beta testing your new UI and selective exposure may help.

Viral Marketing – Web 2.0 Expo September 17, 2008

Posted by simarprit in : 'Viral Marketing, Blogging, Internet, Marketing Strategies, Web 2.0, Web 2.0 Expo, websites , 1 comment so far

Random thoughts and Gyan on Essentials of Viral Marketing

  1. Jonah Peretti has begun with the mess which is Web 2.0 everyone talks to everyone, something like a confernce without a moderator.
  2. Are you part of the network whch networks, are you in a position to initiate a viral. Network structure make a difference to whether your viral spreads or not…. Your network would determine whether you can start a forest fire.
  3. Influential people become the key factor to success..
  4. If it is a tree without a stem, so my question how would it gain height.
  5. People don’t know what they like, thy like to look around and like what others are doing, how can you cash this sentiment.
  6. Contagious Media – Make something which people would love to share.
  7. Accidental virals do good, so make accidents happen.
  8. Half the time in office is spent on blogging, IM, Skype etc..
  9. Bored at Work Network (BWN) can create an expert out of anyone, can you leverage it..
  10. Seed your viral with big number start big, you would reach somewhere even if you fail. LoL Jonah is calling it Big Seed Marketing
  11. Seed to extra ratio can help….
  12. Multi Seed Marketing, plant many tree, some may bear fruit…. live measurement can be a way to lookafter the seed which is reacting and becoming a tree. Multi-Seed is an option when you are sure that you are not sure what will work. So you can always remove the bad seeds and grow the ones which work.
  13. Mullet Strategy, Business upfront, party in the back….Add, edit, test, tweak, optimize, be alive — be live and remember to remove it if it is not working
  14. Histrionic works, try it alongside
  15. Cartoons work, look at using them effectively….
  16. Have focused growth strategy, obsession with quality can be additional baggage, Make what people would love.

SES 2008 Site Clinic August 22, 2008

Posted by simarprit in : Blogging, Internet, Search Engines, SEO, SES 2008, websites , 1 comment so far

So what is a website clinic? As per Search Engine Strategies 2008, San Jose organizers, a website clinic is a one to tow hour session where a panel of “Website Gurus” evaluate your site publicly.

They allow you to explain what your site does briefly. Each site review takes about 15 minutes, I attended three sessions on this subject today:

My random thoughts:

  1. Try to stick to one coder or a style of coding
  2. Ensure your site supports the resolution your customer group generally work on
  3. Maybe it is a good idea to give relative links from your homepage to internal server
  4. Seeing what you are looking for in the URL makes sense
  5. Dynamic Menus can create a problem, they may confuse the spider, robots and whatever
  6. JS is best avoided in all sorts of navigation.
  7. JS also adds to overheads
  8. It may be good idea to tackle multiple coder issue by rewriting the code for your top pages (top pages and not all pages) in one style from time to time.
  9. Hyphens are better than underscores in the path and on the page.
  10. Wisely use SEO products and be open to adopting them.
  11. All upper case usage is not good
  12. Ensure your sitemap is there and update it regularly
  13. Define your 20 second elevator pitch and put it prominently
  14. 404 hurts, avoid Not Found Errors
  15. Avoid denial of service errors, they hurt
  16. Bring up Page 2 and Page 3 words
  17. Try MSN funnel tool
  18. Use KML
  19. Provide data dircetly to search engines
  20. Try layering image over text, but don’t go overboard

 

More to come..

Diwali Mela and Virtual Rakhi get a new organizer July 4, 2008

Posted by simarprit in : Diwali, Festivals, Internet, portals, Raksha Bandhan - Rakhi , 1 comment so far

Business synergies are critical. Small business doesn’t make sense for anyone anymore, more so for those who have other assets and businesses to handle.

Compare Infobase now owns over 1600 websites and portals, I remember at the best the names or existence of about 200 of them, as Compare’s business is to develop and sell websites, selling a website is a business transaction. Whenever we sell an Internet site which is known, we are asked don’t you feel bad after selling the site? My answer is we loved developing it and owning it and we love the act of selling it, this is our business. The second part of my answer actually is not palatable to people, “We make effort to sell to a buyer who would do justice to the site”. Most of the people find the answer a guilt cover, which it is not as selling is a pleasure and not a guilt. The new owner group of http://www.diwalimela.com(Diwali Mela) are well established players, they understand sites as much as we do and they desire to pursue e-commerce business. Dinesh Aggarwal is a dear friend and an old business associate, Dinesh is more known for India Mart however he also owns Intermesh Shopping Network which has bought Diwali Mela and its stablemate http://www.virtualrakhi.com  (Virtual Rakhi).

Diwali Mela was born as a concept of holding a global Diwali Mela or an Exhibition on the Internet. We used it like that for few years, but somehow we always felt that our job was not to manage a business of the site, we were comfortable managing and developing the site. With Diwali Mela and Virtual Rakhi (Our site for the festivals of Raksha Bandhan and not a virtual Rakhi Sawant… LoL) sold we exit from one of the business lines which we were reluctant players in.

Diwali Mela and Virtual Rakhi leave behind fond memories and great learning experience, we wish both the sites best of luck and great success with their new owners.

Indian Websites – Most Popular in the USA May 24, 2008

Posted by simarprit in : Uncategorized , 10comments

For the November 2009 update – go here – November 2009

For the October 2009 update  – go here http://uurl.in/5OvvT

Important: This post was first written by me on May 24, 2008. It has been periodically updated ever since. For latest popularity positioning please look at the last table which has current data as on Feb 17,  2009.

Search leads to research, a term I had heard first from my late mother motivated me in drilling down on this topic. I was searching for available data on Indian websites and their usage in United States of America, three days and several sites later I concluded that the data in ready form may not be available at all, and If it is available then it is definitely not in public domain. I requested my colleague Ajith to help me out as we got going to do a serious research.

The following criteria was defined:

  1. The domain name should be owned by (whois.sc) an Indian entity.
  2. The site must have significant Indian viewership and also have significant US viewership.
  3. The site’s information should be available in http://www.Alexa.com, http://www.Compete.com and  http://www.Quantcast.com
  4. All sites meeting the above criteria but having significant for adults only content were excluded from the study.
  5. A first level list of 1000 websites was made, the list was culled out from information available across different ranking and listing sites.
  6. Final list is a sorting on the basis of the sites ranking on Quantcast.com
  7. Disclaimer: This is a personal not for profit research study
Rank Top 50 Indian websites in the US Quantcast Rank
1 mapsofworld.com 2991
2 rediff.com 3548
3 indiatimes.com 4940
4 shaadi.com 5805
5 sulekha.com 6399
6 sify.com 7889
7 hindu.com 8944
8 cricinfo.com 9307
9 tribuneindia.com 11744
10 indiamart.com 12384
11 dgreetings.com 14230
12 makemytrip.com 15778
13 bollywoodsargam.com 15888
14 mapsofindia.com 23482
15 raaga.com 23981
16 mydearvalentine.com 29783
17 tradeindia.com 37872
18 ndtv.com 46156
19 ibibo.com 47390
20 indiaglitz.com 50871
21 hindustantimes.com 55316
22 ibnlive.com 55342
23 craftsinindia.com 61841
24 expressindia.com 75032
25 masalatalk.com 78502
26 naukri.com 79506
27 yatra.com 89997
28 bharatmatrimony.com 96028
29 guruji.com 100724
30 jeevansathi.com 101623
31 bharatstudent.com 107902
32 naukrihub.com 118046
33 icicibank.com 144872
34 zapak.com 148040
35 99acres.com 154195
36 bseindia.com 155620
37 indiaedu.com 165345
38 india-crafts.com 175757
39 rediffmail.com 184683
40 bestindiansites.com 191226
41 headlinesindia.com 215907
42 iplt20.com 293696
43 timesjobs.com 300006
44 cricketnext.com 339053
45 indiahandicraftstore.com 397696
46 magicbricks.com 471388
47 carwale.com 477278
48 automobileindia.com 506871
49 pagalguy.com 536631
50 indiahousing.com 622239

A/NIf there is any site which is not included in te above research, please post a comment.

July 4, 2008

Updated List

Top Indian Sites in US
Rank Top 50 Indian websites in US Quantcast Rank
1 rediff.com 1665
2 indiatimes.com 2265
3 mapsofworld.com 2577
4 bollywoodsargam.com 3355
5 indiamart.com 5266
6 cricinfo.com 5442
7 sify.com 5626
8 hindu.com 5644
9 shaadi.com 6036
10 sulekha.com 6550
11 tribuneindia.com 7278
12 hindustantimes.com 8354
13 dgreetings.com 9970
14 tradeindia.com 10192
15 makemytrip.com 10618
16 raaga.com 11629
17 bharatmatrimony.com 12539
18 ndtv.com 13064
19 guruji.com 16244
20 ibnlive.com 16521
21 mapsofindia.com 16893
22 samachar.com 17061
23 icicibank.com 17074
24 mydearvalentine.com 17546
25 zapak.com 18391
26 jeevansathi.com 20525
27 expressindia.com 20906
28 bharatstudent.com 26098
29 naukri.com 26257
30 rediffmail.com 30228
31 indiaglitz.com 31523
32 airindia.com 34084
33 bseindia.com 34150
34 99acres.com 36430
35 timesjobs.com 42667
36 carwale.com 43478
37 craftsinindia.com 43724
38 cricketnext.com 58027
39 pagalguy.com 76295
40 magicbricks.com 86260
41 naukrihub.com 97314
42 indiaedu.com 100359
43 yatra.com 134161
44 bestindiansites.com 242184
45 india-crafts.com 244070
46 timesofindia.com 252386
47 indiahousing.com 268694
48 headlinesindia.com 325763
49 automobileindia.com 375809
50 indiahandicraftstore.com 1221133

It has been few months so we thought we will revisit and see what has happened.

My colleague at Compare, Shrina helped me in getting data in place.

It made me feel good that our website http://www.mapsofworld.comemerged as No 1, I was expecting as much. Mani, Ushaand all of their team members get the credit for exemplary performance of the website.

So here we go, the data is current as on October 7, 2008.

Top Indian Sites in US
Rank Top 50 Indian websites in US Quantcast Rank 10/7
1 mapsofworld.com 1523
2 bollywoodsargam.com 1680
3 rediff.com 1854
4 indiatimes.com 2132
5 sify.com 4617
6 sulekha.com 5433
7 hindustantimes.com 5521
8 cricinfo.com 5689
9 indiamart.com 5714
10 hindu.com 6527
11 shaadi.com 7306
12 dgreetings.com 8868
13 tribuneindia.com 9577
14 ndtv.com 10,126
15 bharatmatrimony.com 10,141
16 icicibank.com 11,078
17 guruji.com 11,169
18 tradeindia.com 12,577
19 ibnlive.com 13,442
20 mapsofindia.com 14,180
21 bharatstudent.com 14,194
22 airindia.com 14,413
23 makemytrip.com 14,445
24 naukri.com 14,687
25 raaga.com 15,320
26 expressindia.com 17,652
27 samachar.com 18,200
28 rediffmail.com 22,954
29 zapak.com 23,425
30 jeevansathi.com 31,519
31 indiaglitz.com 32,884
32 cricketnext.com 35,646
33 bseindia.com 40,818
34 timesofindia.com 51,020
35 pagalguy.com 61,892
36 timesjobs.com 71,244
37 naukrihub.com 74,162
38 99acres.com 79,378
39 carwale.com 91,562
40 magicbricks.com 95,773
41 mydearvalentine.com 1,02,765
42 craftsinindia.com 1,06,258
43 indiaedu.com 1,18,027
44 yatra.com 1,35,579
45 bestindiansites.com 1,42,639
46 headlinesindia.com 1,57,244
47 india-crafts.com 1,68,161
48 automobileindia.com 2,10,659
49 indiahousing.com 2,46,086
50 indiahandicraftstore.com 5,43,627

The List updated as on November 14, 2008

Rank Top 50 Indian websites in the US Quantcast Rank
1 rediff.com 1435
2 mapsofworld.com 1556
3 indiatimes.com 1734
4 bollywoodsargam.com 2511
5 sify.com 3943
6 hindu.com 4977
7 bharatmatrimony.com 5944
8 sulekha.com 5997
9 indiamart.com 6994
10 cricinfo.com 7235
11 hindustantimes.com 7693
12 dgreetings.com 7708
13 mydearvalentine.com 8317
14 shaadi.com 8451
15 ndtv.com 8637
16 tribuneindia.com 9360
17 guruji.com 11214
18 expressindia.com 11641
19 zapak.com 12532
20 tradeindia.com 12689
21 mapsofindia.com 13584
22 raaga.com 14470
23 makemytrip.com 14747
24 icicibank.com 17643
25 naukri.com 17946
26 samachar.com 18070
27 bharatstudent.com 18370
28 bseindia.com 24241
29 ibnlive.com 24913
30 timesjobs.com 27470
31 jeevansathi.com 30327
32 rediffmail.com 34192
33 indiaglitz.com 37763
34 craftsinindia.com 46087
35 ibibo.com 47390
36 cricketnext.com 62053
37 naukrihub.com 67868
38 carwale.com 78257
39 masalatalk.com 78502
40 yatra.com 97696
41 headlinesindia.com 102546
42 indiaedu.com 106026
43 bestindiansites.com 135192
44 99acres.com 168962
45 magicbricks.com 179686
46 india-crafts.com 212994
47 automobileindia.com 217158
48 pagalguy.com 249653
49 indiahandicraftstore.com 358076
50 indiahousing.com 622239

Here we go again – Jan 22, 2009…

All sites which are in bold are either owned (fully or partially) or managed by Compare Infobase Limited.

Top Indian Sites in US
Rank Top 50 Indian websites in US Quantcast Rank 12/22 Quantcast Rank 1/21
1 rediff.com 1496 1,274
2 bollywoodsargam.com 2311 1,832
3 mapsofworld.com 1810 1,947
4 indiatimes.com 1517 1,995
5 hindu.com 4721 4,721
6 sify.com 5329 6,047
7 sulekha.com 7258 6,369
8 hindustantimes.com 8448 7,034
9 cricinfo.com 6478 7,277
10 mydearvalentine.com 7,280 7,509
11 indiamart.com 7018 7,535
12 dgreetings.com 5872 7,697
13 shaadi.com 9193 8,780
14 guruji.com 9318 9,871
15 ndtv.com 8634 10,116
16 tradeindia.com 14,719 10,470
17 tribuneindia.com 12,020 11,452
18 bharatmatrimony.com 8239 11,934
19 bharatstudent.com 15,185 12,579
20 expressindia.com 12,218 13,364
21 mapsofindia.com 10,767 13,806
22 webindia123.com 11,017 14,695
23 icicibank.com 19,347 15,425
24 makemytrip.com 15,249 16,024
25 raaga.com 25,599 17,541
26 samachar.com 18,517 18,297
27 timesofindia.com 43,798 22,315
28 jeevansathi.com 41,526 35,677
29 rediffmail.com 45,919 36,293
30 indya.com 33,662 41,797
31 naukri.com 32,582 43,516
32 zapak.com 29,488 46,392
33 123india.com 77,969 48,328
34 indiainfo.com 35,327 48,357
35 bseindia.com 38,518 51,958
36 indiahousing.com 58,930 55,421
37 craftsinindia.com 53,724 67,034
38 99acres.com 92,624 68,347
39 naukrihub.com 74,362 70,002
40 ibnlive.com 97,506 70,275
41 pagalguy.com 1,40,021 71,319
42 timesjobs.com 42,147 72,227
43 indiaglitz.com 70,961 74,092
44 liveindia.com 39,822 80,899
45 carwale.com not enough data 84,086
46 yatra.com 80,883 87,177
47 indiaedu.com 1,08,940 92,264
48 headlinesindia.com 62,822 1,15,180
49 bestindiansites.com 1,63,644 1,44,815
50 magicbricks.com 2,23,214 1,60,059

As we keep on moving ahead we add new sites on the way. This list is now the most researched primary source of Indian site usage in the United States of America

So here we go Feb 17/ 2009

Rank Top 50 Indian websites in US Quantcast Rank 2/16
1 bollywoodsargam.com 1533
2 mapsofworld.com 1549
3 rediff.com 1657
4 indiatimes.com 2269
5 mydearvalentine.com 2890
6 hindu.com 4179
7 sulekha.com 5398
8 sify.com 5547
9 ibibo.com 6128
10 hindustantimes.com 6892
11 chakpak.com 6923
12 indiamart.com 7536
13 apunkachoice.com 8150
14 dgreetings.com 8360
15 cricinfo.com 8514
16 guruji.com 9455
17 tradeindia.com 9506
18 bharatstudent.com 10086
19 bharatmatrimony.com 10131
20 shaadi.com 10539
21 ndtv.com 10598
22 tribuneindia.com 12478
23 expressindia.com 13220
24 webindia123.com 14337
25 mapsofindia.com 14523
26 raaga.com 18177
27 bollywoodhungama.com 20146
28 samachar.com 20335
29 in.com 20601
30 indya.com 20703
31 makemytrip.com 22149
32 jeevansathi.com 29018
33 zapak.com 29918
34 icicibank.com 31429
35 naukri.com 32441
36 99acres.com 32828
37 indiainfo.com 41226
38 rediffmail.com 44292
39 bseindia.com 46250
40 liveindia.com 60621
41 carwale.com 61269
42 indiaglitz.com 61402
43 timesofindia.com 65188
44 timesjobs.com 66729
45 naukrihub.com 69087
46 indiahousing.com 70330
47 craftsinindia.com 72185
48 headlinesindia.com 88270
49 yatra.com 92781
50 indiaedu.com 100378

More

to come…