Posted in: Business

Yelp is Good

I have been playing with Yelp since July and I really have grown to like it. Part of the reason that I like it is that I haven’t seen anything really interesting (at scale) in the entertainment review space since Citysearch. Citysearch is great as a directory — if you want to find an address […]

Posted in: Business

eBay and User-Generated Content

I have been looking at a lot of interesting companies lately, especially those in the user-generated content area. Video is one area that is showing rapid uptake — there are a lot of companies in this space vying to be the home for user-generated video. Some of them, YouTube in particular, appear to be really […]

Posted in: Business, Search

Vertical Search Business Models – It’s All about Economic Transactions

For the past week I have been talking with a bunch of people about vertical search business models. I have a pretty bipolar perspective on vertical search; some days I think there is a business there and some days I don’t. After many enlightening conversations, my general thoughts can be summed up in the following […]

Posted in: Business

More Thoughts on Click-to-Call

I was browsing this interesting article on click-to-call or pay-per-call or whatever you want to call it. I have always thought that integrating the telephone and fax into the mix would be key to getting small and/or local businesses interested in online advertising as a means of lead generation. It lowers the barrier of having […]

Posted in: Business, Search

Technorati and Wink

I have been experimenting with Wink for about two weeks now and I really think it’s useful provided the target of your search meets one of two categories: 1. The content you are trying to locate is something of interest to the current universe of taggers (breaking news, technology topics, poltiics, etc.) 2. The data […]

Posted in: Business

Where are all of the E-Commerce Mashups? (Updated)

Whether you like the terms “web 2.0” or “mashup” at all, it’s tough to argue that themes underlying these concepts were not a big story this year. Something that has been lurking at the back of my mind, however, is why so much of this energy has been focused on content as opposed to commerce. I have been playing around with Yahoo’s Shoposphere since it launched and it is kinda cool. But what I have been wondering for awhile now is why all of the energy focused on creating content or mapping mashups hasn’t spilled over to e-commerce.

Specifically, it seems to me that there are a lot of discrete sources of good product reviews (Amazon, eBay, CNet product reviews, epinions, etc), good price comparison services, and basic information about products. However, there is no really good way to stitch this all together. For example, Amazon has great product reviews. So does epinions. So do lots of other places. There are also some blogs that are great sources of information that aids consumers looking at products to purchase. Why not roll up all of this info into one place to give consumers a more complete vision of what the web community is saying about a given product or market? There would be some clear opportunities to leverage reputation and source authoritativeness when culling the reviews out there. If you add in the ability to integrate some form of social awareness (products that your friends have purchased, blogs or information sources that your friends use, etc) similar to the pick lists in the Yahoo! Shoposphere, you could have a neat little shopping application that would give much more complete information in terms of product reviews, price comparison, and social awareness.

It also seems to me that it would be pretty easy to monetize something like this. The basic model would be to get a cut of transactions for any sales that are completed with a partner. You could also run some ads on the side, just for kicks.

I have been on the hunt for interesting e-commerce mashups and haven’t really seen any. If you have seen anything interesting, email me and let me know.
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