Compete puts icons next to Google and Yahoo search results

Today I’ve been using LinkedIn.com to find someone who worked at Travelzoo back when they issued shares to thousands (or was it hundreds of thousands?) of customers. That is such an interesting concept. It made a big splash in the 90s during the bubble. But would it work today with new SEC regulations? That’s what I want to explore.

I found more than 50 people in my LinkedIn.com network that have worked at Travelzoo in the past or work there now, but none on the legal or executive management team. Mostly web designers, developers, content people/producers, and sales and marketing folks.

So I turned to Google using Firefox and did a search. And I was amazed to find that the new Compete toolbar that I have installed parsed the Google search results and put three icons next to every entry.

This is what it looks like:
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So I’ve never used a toolbar that adds more data to the Google search results and I’m not sure if I like it yet…but it is a gutsy move by Compete. If they get a lot of toolbar users, they’ll be piggybacking on Google’s traffic to direct a lot of eyeballs to themselves. I just checked and it does the same thing with Yahoo search results.

This Compete toolbar is extremely interesting. I wonder what the fallout will be….

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Answer: Yes

I asked the question in my last post, “Will Compete’s toolbar become an essential tool for internet marketers.” After 15 minutes with the tool, and after watching the excellent Flash presentation about what this service aims to do, I answer with a resounding, “Yes!”

My favorite slide in the Flash presentation was this:

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I checked out the one year history on several of my companies and several other sites; at first glance, the traffic data seems quite reliable. For example, here is the trend data for three popular genealogy sites.

15 minutes isn’t enough to integrate something into my daily workflow. But it is enough time for me to decide that I’m going to start using it every day so I can see if it sticks.

Based on what I’ve seen so far, I am inviting all the internet marketers that I know to try Connect’s Toolbar, look at their traffic data, and post comments about whether you think this will replace Alexa, first, and also, how disruptive this new service will be to Hitwise, Comscore, and Netratings.

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Will Compete’s Toolbar become an essential tool for internet marketers?

Bill Gross, one of the world’s most prolific entrepreneurs and an inspiration to me for more than 10 years, officially launched Compete.com today. (See the Alexa Chart for Compete.com.)

I just downloaded the Compete toolbar. The graphics indicates that 2 million people are already sharing their clicks so that we can all know better what sites are popular and what sites we can trust.

The two essential toolbars that I install on every PC I use are Google’s (mainly for the page rank and backward links info, and for convenience of searching) and Alexa’s. Every internet marketer needs both of these toolbars.

Just yesterday I read that some industry experts were complaining about how everyone who can’t afford a high-end reliable web site analytics program like Hitwise or Comscore use Alexa to see how popular web sites are. Alexa’s data is not statistically very reliable, even with 10 million downloads of its toolbar. But Alexa data shows up in almost every VC pitch these days.

So if Compete can provide better data than Alexa, we’ll all be better off.

My favorite industry statistics web site of all time is Top9.com. It used data from PC Data, but it had the best categorizations and the easiest UI of all the web analytics companies. But it hasn’t been updated since 2001.

Note to Bill Gross: please buy Top9.com and start powering it with the data you gather from Compete.com.

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BYU eBusiness Lecture Series–2006

I accidentally saved this blog post in my “drafts” and I guess I never posted this entry about the BYU eBusiness Lecture Series for Fall 2006.

It’s a bit late in the BYU semester now, but since Josh James of Omniture (the world’s best web analytics company) is speaking today, and Brian Beutler in two weeks, and Matt Mossman in three, I thought I should still post this in case some PLA members or others from the general public, may want to attend.

6 September Stephen Liddle, director, Rollins Center for eBusiness, What is eBusiness?

13 September Doug Dean, associate professor, information systmes, Does IT Matter?

20 September Alan Chipman, senior manager of SPA, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Identifying and Managing the Risks of eBusiness

27 September Ralph Yarro, CEO, ThinkAtomic, Managing Internet Pornography and the Fight to Save a Generation

4 October Paul Allen, CEO, ProvoLabs, The Power of Social Networking in an eBusiness World

11 October Doug Witt, instructor of business management, The Impact of the Internet on Marketing

18 October Jack Sunderlage, CEO, ContentWatch, USTAR, Utah

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BYU-Idaho Entrepreneur Conference

I am excited to attend the BYU-Idaho Entrepreneur Conference this week, to help judge the entrepreneur of the year competition, and to talk to students there about entrepreneurship.

While I’m there, I may scout around for some office space in case we want to expand Provo Labs Academy, our academy for entrepreneurs, to Rexburg, Idaho. I’m going to do the same thing on my trip to BYU-Hawaii next week. (Although, I’m not sure how much available office space exists in Laie, Hawaii!)

Apparently the enrollment at BYU-Idaho jumped this year, somewhat unexpectedly, to 13,500 students. (See Wikipedia article on BYU-Idaho.)

Under the leadership of the Kim Clark, former dean of the Harvard Business School, I hear that some real innovation in education is happening at BYU-Idaho. I hope to learn about it on my visit.

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