LookSmart Answer Their Critics

Written by Kalena Jordan

If you've read my article "LOOKs Can Be Deceiving" (http://www.high-search-engine-ranking.com/LOOKs_Can_Be_Deceiving.htm), you'll already know how I feel about LookSmart's recent decision to change their US-based directory model at www.looksmart.com from Paid Submission to Pay Per Click.

One person who was very interested inrepparttar article was CEO of LookSmart Australia, Damian Smith. After he read it, Mr Smith contacted me and agreed to an exclusive interview to address some ofrepparttar 125089 issues raised inrepparttar 125090 article. Below is a transcript of that interview.

Dorepparttar 125091 answers provided by LookSmart shed much light on their decision or go any way towards resolvingrepparttar 125092 issues? I'll let you make up your own mind:

--------------------------- (WR) = Web Rank, (DS) = Damian Smith

Question 1 (WR) - Why did LookSmart Ltd decide to change LookSmart.com from a Paid Directory to a Pay Per Click model?

(DS) Our customers told us to. For 24 months, since we launched our first Submit product, customers wanted to know what they were getting for their US$299. They wanted a guarantee. We couldn't give them one, since results are served according to relevancy.

Now, you only get charged when you get a lead to your site. Strict accountability. If we don't deliver traffic, we don't get paid. Ifrepparttar 125093 leads don't convert, you won't keep paying us either. Withrepparttar 125094 new model,repparttar 125095 users' need for a relevant search result,repparttar 125096 advertisers' need for a qualified lead andrepparttar 125097 distribution partner's need for revenue are perfectly aligned.

Question 2 (WR) - Why did LookSmart Ltd decide to force their customers to rollover intorepparttar 125098 new model instead of grand fathering their listings?

(DS) We're giving our legacy customers US$300 in value-that's more than they ever paid inrepparttar 125099 first place. Plus, we're giving them 20 months to stay inrepparttar 125100 directory and see for themselves how wellrepparttar 125101 product works. In addition, if listings are critical for relevancy, they'll stay inrepparttar 125102 directory regardless of paid status.

Question 3 (WR) - Why wasn'trepparttar 125103 model introduced for LookSmart.com.au? Did local consumer protection laws or other legal issues prevent this?

(DS) We've decided not to move our directory in Australia to a pay-per-click model for SME's purely for business reasons - most notably making it easier for our sales channels to sellrepparttar 125104 product. Our sales channels in Australia will be very different from those inrepparttar 125105 US - most notably, because of our relationship with Pacific Access, their salesforce (sic) will be selling our SME product alongside Yellow Pages Online and their other products. We expect this to be our dominant sales channel within a short period of time. Because these products tend to be fixed or annual fees, we believed there would be difficult issues for sales people in trying to sell products on very different bases. We certainly don't believe there are any legal issues involved in a move to a different pricing basis.

Question 4 (WR) - If there was no move to a PPC model, why did LookSmart Australia seerepparttar 125106 need to increaserepparttar 125107 paid submission fee and introduce an annual fee here?

(DS) We've always intended to move to an annual fee, and think that's a perfectly reasonable basis for directory inclusion - just like a Yellow Pages model, where businesses pay annually for inclusion. The fee increase reflectsrepparttar 125108 significant increase in distribution overrepparttar 125109 past 12 months - most notably OptusNet and GOeureka, which are now exclusively powered by LookSmart. AUD$400 per annum (pre GST) is excellent value givenrepparttar 125110 volume of traffic - andrepparttar 125111 highly qualified nature ofrepparttar 125112 leads - we're sending to SME's.

Question 5 (WR) - Underrepparttar 125113 revised LookListings submission model for LookSmart.com.au, is there a limit torepparttar 125114 number of sites and/or URL's you can submit?

(DS) Yes, you can list up to 3 URL's fromrepparttar 125115 same domain via this process. For sites who want to list more than 3 URL's from same domain, we ask them to contact our Sales team directly, where a tailored cost-per-click campaign can be developed specifically for that client.

Question 6 (WR) - Looking at your new LookListings TOS for LookSmart.com.au, it appearsrepparttar 125116 only way to request a change or update a listing is by re-submitting and paying an additional AUD 440 for a complete review. How do you expect small businesses to afford this?

(DS) You've raised a fair point, and we're introducing a new product shortly to allow small businesses to update their listing for a much modest fee. We should have full details on this product inrepparttar 125117 next week or so.

Question 7 (WR) - Will LookSmart Australia be switching to a similar PPC model inrepparttar 125118 near future? If so, can you guarantee existing customers of LookSmart.com.au won't be forced to rollover like those of LookSmart.com?

(DS) Givenrepparttar 125119 issue our sales channels in Australia - see question 3 above - we won't be moving to a CPC model for SME's. We will continue to offer CPC -repparttar 125120 preferred method - for larger clients, as we've been doing for over 2 years. We do hope to offer SME'srepparttar 125121 opportunity to list inrepparttar 125122 premium "Featured Listings" or "Sponsored Matches" placements now seen on many of our partners, most notably Yahoo! Australia & NZ. This would be onrepparttar 125123 same CPC basis as other clients, but would obviously be entirely discretionary for those SME's to decide whether they wanted to list this way. Again,repparttar 125124 Yellow Pages analogy is worth considering - a fee for inclusion, and then opportunities to pay for prominence on relevant keywords.

Question 8 (WR) - Because ofrepparttar 125125 recent outrage caused by LookSmart.com's move, many Australian and New Zealand customers of LookSmart Australia feel that LookSmart.com.au is tarred withrepparttar 125126 same brush and are hesitant to remain as customers. What do you say to them?

(DS) Look, while there are some SEO's that are complaining, and we hope to work with them and address their complaints in a sensible and balanced fashion, we believe that overrepparttar 125127 next few months, most end use customers -repparttar 125128 businesses who actually payrepparttar 125129 bills atrepparttar 125130 end ofrepparttar 125131 day - have recognized that they can get better long-term service & value inrepparttar 125132 US out of our new product. The pricing is only one part ofrepparttar 125133 change - there's also a raft of new options for customers on reporting and flexibility in controlling exposure and spend each month.

Pay Per Click to guarantee targeted traffic!

Written by Steve Nash

Search engines and directories are important in getting a steady flow of traffic to your site. However, you really have to work hard (or pay someone to work hard), to even get close to guaranteeing a top 10 position on them.

Pay-Per-Click search engines, onrepparttar other hand, offer yourepparttar 125088 enticing prospect of a guaranteed search engine position (guaranteed, that is, at time of bidding). And even better, as more traditional search engines struggle to generate income, some Pay-Per-Click results are actually used within these traditional engines too.

However, a listing on a Pay-Per-Click search engine has to be considered differently.

In this instance, you DON'T WANT just anyone to click your link. In fact, you ONLY want your prospective customers to click, and you must choose your keywords and description carefully to make sure that happens.


Overture (formerly GoTo) is by farrepparttar 125089 most popular pay-per-click search engine onrepparttar 125090 web right now. It wasrepparttar 125091 first pay-per- click search engine and as such Overture's results can now be found on many other search engines. Also, Overture haverepparttar 125092 toughest anti-fraud measures in place - there is *less chance* of receiving bogus clicks using Overture.

However, due to Overture's market dominance - there is now a UK version - Overture now incorporate a minimum bid of 5 pennies (other pay-per-click search engines still let you have a minimum bid of 1p). And Overture will soon insist on a minimum spend each month ($20), if they have not done so already.

Overture - http://www.overture.com Overture UK - http://www.uk.overture.com

















Cont'd on page 2 ==>
ImproveHomeLife.com © 2005
Terms of Use