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Journal Coventry's Journal: Getting hits, but not the right kind. 9

Ok, so I mentioned my companie's website in a post - attached to a story about starting your own company. The post got moderated upto a 5, and now my site is getting hit. No big slashdot effect, but it's way more traffic than normal.

So, this brought something to mind - a thought I had the other day when talking to bloodrose. It's the concept of the slashdot-effect versus real interest in a product, or the geek-gawk effect. What I'm thinking of is when a site sees an unexpected increase in hits due to a mention on slashdot, but doesn't see an increase in sales, because the extra traffic is just slashdot readers checking out the site and going 'thats neat', but not buying. For example, the yamaha speech synthesis thingy from the other day - if people at yamaha noticed their server getting slammed, their first reaction would be 'wow, people are really interested in our new product' - but this would be wrong, dead wrong. What if they increased production due to the 'percieved' interest?

I guess my post doesn't have a specific point other than that users need to be aware of where and Why people are visiting their site, otherwise incorrect actions can be taken in response.


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Getting hits, but not the right kind.

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  • Never under estimate the power of impulse purchase. The COST:COOL ratio determains the VIEW:BUY ratio. Yamaha will see more sales because of the /.'ing that they took. I would love to play with that software, but I can't afford it. I told my dad (a program director of a small market radio station) about it and he's going to look at it for making cheeper bed tracks. Places like thinkgeek absolutely live off nothing but whim purchaces. look at telemarketing. it's a law of averages. If you call 1000,
    • True, impulse purchases can be king for some situations - but what sort of impulse purchases would someone like me get? My company has nothing that can be bought as an impulse purchase - we provide services, and we provide support... And sometimes, the cost involved of the target product puts it outside the pocketbook range of many people who will see the item in a slashdoting. The site might get 80k extra hits, but only 2 or 3 people who can actually afford the expensive car/gadget/computer-thingy are in
      • honestly I haven't checked out your site, but I would bet that one of those 80k people are going to run across someone who is scratching their head, and go "oh yeah, i remember this company that..." you will never pick up clients that don't know about you. you may never pick up new clients from those who do, but your odds are better that way. BTW, did the extra traffic cost you anything?
        • Nope, its a biz dsl line, and prolly just hit the upstream limit occasionaly. If I was on a dedicated box somewhere or on a burstable line - well, then it'd be a very different issue entirely.

          Heres to hoping things go well!
    • I agree. The load at Yamaha may not equate exactly to new sales, but I'd bet the sales do at least spike as a result of the interest. Maybe you'll see the same, Coventry.... keep us posted :)
      • I hope the extra traffic Does increase sales - I'm just pessimistic due to previous experiences. PDO (one of our open source projects) got enough attention that it got included on a cd-rom bundled with a magazine in europe - yet we got 0 new clients, 0 support contracts, etc.

        Of course, the second we get a support contract, or get paid to add a feature, or a new client that hires us just because thier in house developers like us, then I'll change my tune - but for now I'm just not seeing results.

      • We've had a couple thousand unique visitors to the site since the post-mention. Still no contact form entries, but thats a lot of traffic.

        I also noticed while going through the logs that a project I just mentioned off-hand on the python mailing list, remoteD, which we still don't have available for download on sourceforge(let alone proper documentation) has been downloaded 20 times - 18 of which have taken place months after the mention of the project in the single post. I know, 20 downloads isn't much,

The first rule of intelligent tinkering is to save all the parts. -- Paul Erlich