Got here a little late so I’ll just slip in my notes mid-session. Attending:
- Greg Sterling (The Kelsey Group)
- Bindu Reddy, Product Manager, GoogleBase
- Craig Donato, Founder, Oodle
- Keith Teare, Founder, Edgeio
The discussion is about three online classified services.
Keith – also partner with Michael Arrington on TechCrunch. The value of data is in distribution. TechCrunch went up in value in the more it was distributed around the network via technologies such as RSS. Keith says this is also the case with classifieds – the more it’s distributed, the more valuable the service. The cost of creating a classified ad is near zero. The business model is not around charging for the service to host and ad, the value is in monetizing a qualified lead via a distribtution network.
Craig – value created on two ends. One is in aggregating interest in an item, the other is in offering a qualified lead that converts to a sale.
Keith – craigslist should not be charging for posting job listing or, as recently announced, real estate listings in NYC. This is a mistake, the publishing should be free and craigslist should allow other sites to pull content from craigslist (so long as the links point back to craigslist) so that the classifieds on craigslist gets maximum distribtution. craigslist should focus on taking a cut of the transaction, not the posting.
Craig – what is a classified ad? It’s perishable, it’s local, you want to see it before you buy it. There is a difference between what is listed on eBay and what’s on craigslist – the craigslist stuff is going to be classified.
Keith – mobile will be useful as an alerting service to have RSS feeds trigger an alert when an item you’re looking for becomes available. Browsing experience is too slow to be a useful extention of the classified services at this stage.
Edgeio – the "i" stands for "in" and the "o" is for "out" – the unique model they have is that is will go out and scrape listings off of self-publishing sites and make a directory of listings. This model will prevail as the centralized listing sites such as craigslist begin to charge for listings on their site.
Dave McClure – will GoogleBase allow others in to index their content? Bindu answers that they will modify their robots.txt file to allow others in, such as Simply Hired, to crawl selected content for indexing.