Search Engine Strategy

March 21, 2008 at 5:37 am Leave a comment


We’ve recently answered some questions for the “Startups Carnival” (http://startups.sharmavishal.com/) which we thought would be quite interesting to post here.

About clickfind:
clickfind™ is a recently established Internet business that is looking to grow with investment backing. Self-funded so far, but with the business fully up and running, it has potential for huge revenue if given the relevant marketing funds and support. The management team is committed to making the business a success and have built clickfind™ with a long term view in mind. Essentially, clickfind™ is an online business directory that charges a monthly fee to businesses who list their products and services. Established for the Australian marketplace, its intellectual property is owned by clickfind Pty Ltd which means the clickfind™ technology and brand can also be licensed to international markets.

The founders are:
Taco Fleur and Carolyn King (click to view their bio)

The idea of clickfind came about when we wanted to list our own businesses in business directories, one of them being the Yellow Pages. We had an experience that left a bad taste in our mouth, an empty wallet and no results. Thats when we decided to create a business directory/search engine for Australia that is different and excels in the areas others don’t.

How long it took to get up and running:
The business was set up in mid 2007. Business scoping, brand design and web development took approximately six months and clickfind™ was launched as a fully functional website in December 2007. It is Australian owned, run and managed by an experienced, enthusiastic team based in Brisbane. Clickfind’s aim is to become the best business search engine in Australia and become the definitive source for all of Australia’s over 2 million registered businesses.

What is unique about clickfind:
Comprehensive listings: Unlike other directories or search engines, clickfind™ allows a business to add individual listings for each of their products and services (up to 500 of them), as well as basic business info. This allows a business to create a complete online product catalogue which can be shared and syndicated in several ways. A clickfind listing can also act as a mini-website for small or start-up businesses, and a business can have its own unique URL.

  • SEO performance: As well as being a self-contained directory, clickfind™ has been built to optimize performance in external search engines (such as Google) and drive traffic to clickfind™ customers’ websites. Other directories don’t utilise search engine optimization (SEO) techniques in this valuable way.
  • No advertising: clickfind™ does not display any paid advertising (banners). Other sites often display ads of competitors next to business listings, reducing the effectiveness of the listing. They also offer premium listings, which means the most relevant results are often not shown first. Instead, clickfind™ focuses on making the users’ search as useful and relevant as possible.
  • Genuine Aussie businesses: only businesses with a valid ABN are listed on clickfind. This means users will know they’re dealing with a local business (unlike those often found via search engines).
  • Additional unique services: clickfind™ includes a number of additional features not found in other directories, including a wiki-like article sharing feature, free email service, postcode finder, and maps with driving directions. These features are either already available or under development, and other features are in the pipeline. The aim of these services is to increase clickfind’s overall value and usefulness, driving more traffic and thus more revenue.

Our target market:
There are two main target markets, which overlap to some extent:

  1. owners/managers of Australian registered businesses: mostly small/medium businesses, but can include marketing/IT managers of larger corporations
  2. the general public: anyone looking for products or services in Australia. Could include international audiences, but primarily targeted at people living in Australia

Another target market is people involved in internet marketing. This can include SEO experts, web designers, copywriters, bloggers and marketing professionals. These people are in a position to influence business owners and recommend clickfind listings as part of a cohesive marketing strategy.

To address the overlap in these audiences, clickfind’s marketing strategy is multi-pronged:

  1. get the general public to use the website and realise how useful it is, so that they will then advertise their own business (whether they own one, or work for one)
  2. get business owners on board, stressing the competitive advantage they will gain, and encourage them to use the website to find products/services for their own use
  3. establish the clickfind brand in Australia and raise awareness of what it is

Statistics:
These are the figures as at mid-March 2008, with no investment in online advertising.

Statistic

Current (Mar 08)
No. of unique website visitors (in 1 month) 10,696
% of returning visitors 10%
No. of page views (in 1 month) 30,322
No. of businesses listed 4,105
No. of products listed 12,694
No. of services listed 2,035
No. of listings viewed (from launch) 273,000
No. of clickfind pages indexed on Google 26,300
No. of visitors who come to clickfind from Google 6,233
Visitors from Google as a percentage of pages indexed 23.7%
%. of visitors who come to clickfind from Google 66.03%

What sort of marketing are we using:
clickfind™ is in the process of reviewing its marketing strategy, bearing in mind the two main target audiences and both current and long term business priorities. So far all the marketing has been online: Google ads, email campaigns, blogs, press releases and the website itself. Following recent PR, interest in clickfind™ is growing, but direct approaches to businesses have yet to pay off in listing sales.

Marketing channels under consideration (or in progress) include:

  • advertisements in publications read by small-medium business owners
  • regional radio advertising
  • viral email campaign
  • TV advertising to promote the brand to the general public
  • ongoing SEO optimization of the clickfind™ website and blogs
  • press releases through several channels, including AAP
  • referral campaigns

Main competitors:
Clickfind’s main competitors are local directories:

  • Truelocal (owned by news Limited)
  • Mylocal (owned by Microsoft, has business association with Yellow Pages)
  • Yellow Pages (owned by Sensis / Telstra)
  • Google Business Center

Main technologies:
– ColdFusion
– MS SQL Server
– Windows OS

ColdFusion allowed us to rapidly develop the application within 6 months.

How much money is needed for the start-up:
We are actively looking for investment to take the business to the next level.

What are the main barriers in general for people start their venture in Australia:
I believe the main barrier is raising capital and getting media exposure. We’ve been trying to break through with paid wire services that distribute our Press Releases, but nothing major has been picked up or used.

What are your thoughts on the future trends of your service and market segment you are in:
With more and more businesses moving to online advertising, our market will only grow and we’ll be offering more services like; affiliate marketing, permission marketing etc.

What has been the most easy to use, out of box and helpful technology:
ColdFusion has been the most helpful to us in regards to development of the site. It’s a rapid application development tool with lots of extra features, like fancy flash graphs on the fly and PDF creation to mention just a few.

How are you measuring the success of your venture:
We are using Google Analytics to measure site stats and conversion rate. We also have created our in-house stats to measure success. One of the things main things we’re keeping track of is the number of enquiries businesses receive, which is something we see increasing every week. In the end it’s all about businesses getting enquiries, enquiries turning into sales. Our customers will be happy and stay with us. In short, if business enquiries keep rising, we will be successful.

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Entry filed under: clickfind Business Directory. Tags: , , .

Free article submission Carolyn King Bio

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