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Vikas Kamat
 Vikas Kamat is a programmer- entrepreneur living in Birmingham AL. This blog is a complex mix of Indian culture, life in southern USA, computer sciences, and sports. Opinions are his own.
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More Page Views Not Necessarily Good Durable Link to this BLOG
More Page Views Not Necessarily Better

The other day I argued my case against public XML feeds. I continue my logic that more page views is not necessarily better, with a real example.

In the early part of year 2000, one of my customers used to provide a great aggregating service on the web, free of cost to anyone who asked. All one had to do was fill up a form or call. During one of the discussions, a manager argued  that more traffic to the website is not necessarily better for business, while a more dedicated audience is. It  was a radical thought then, and it took a long time to convince the top management, but we implemented exactly that, and here are the stunning results:

Before   After
  • Free access to about 10,000 accounts, free set up, free everything
  • It cost the company about $100 to setup each account, and about $1 million a year in other expenses
  • A lot of unused accounts wasted human efforts, and company didn't benefit anyway in return.
  • End of the free
  • About 2000 accounts paying about $2000 per year
  • Instead of losing a couple of million, the company earns a couple of million
  • Since only those who are interested are using the service, it is allowing the company to understand the needs better, and fulfill the objective of why they started the service in the first place.

Of course, some of you might feel that having a base of 10,000 allowed the company to identify the 2000 paying customers. I am not so sure I subscribe to that theory, because by the same logic, they could have continued to offer the free service to recruit the next 2,000 customers. No?

I am not the only one who follows this logic. Alan Abbey, the new vice president of electronic publishing at Jerusalem Post is about to do the same. This is a very popular source of news from Israel, getting a lot of page views, but not resulting in adequate percolation of brand, or increase in growth of their business. What is he to do?

Deepavali Picture Album

The Lamp of Diwali

Over at Aperture Photo Blog, there is a variety of Deepavali festival pictures -- from a greeting card I made as a six year old, to Rangoli, and fireworks.

FYI: This festival is known by several names and people use different spellings. I have tuned the search engine to accept the varieties by defining synonyms for them.

(Comments Disabled for Now. Sorry!)First Written: Wednesday, October 30, 2002
Last Modified: 11/1/2002

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