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For Dave H and Scott G: re:How RBR makes money (long)(12 posts)

For Dave H and Scott G: re:How RBR makes money (long)gregg
May 13, 2002 7:58 AM
Dave, didn't see your question until like 3 days after....I replied there, but I figure you probably wouldn't see it so I'll repost here. Scott, you also had asked some questions. I have no problem sharing this information, it's not exactly a secret and perhaps if more of the RBR faithful know how things work, they can help us out.

Your question was whether RoadbikeREVIEW gets credit if you click on a Hot Deal (in our Hot Deals section or from the homepage) and then proceed to shop around on the retailers site. The answer is yes and no. We get "credit" for the "click-thru" from our site to their site, but what everyone is interested in now, is not just pure traffic numbers, but rather, what direct impact this has on their sales. Our customers are interested in seeing that click thru convert into a sale. This is where the technology is lacking.

So, if you click on one of our Hot Deals, and buy that item right then and there, we will get paid. But if you click on the Hot Deal, then decide you don't want it, then click and shop on the rest of the retailers site, there isn't a way for us to get credit; even if you then go and buy something in that same session.

To expand a little, RoadbikeREVIEW has basically 3 revenue streams (although I wouldn't call them streams right now, more like trickles): advertising, e-commerce, and classifieds.

Advertising is, of course, the traditional way to make money on the internet. Unfortunately, it is no longer as strong/effective as it once was. People have become de-sensitized to banners, which is why they invented things like skyscrapers, popups and popunders, and rich media ads. All this means more intrusive ads, as advertisers try and blend the ads into the content more and more.

E-commerce means (for us), the Hot Deals and the Buy It Here Buttons you see in our Reviews section. When someone clicks on these links, we get paid on a "cost per click" basis. However, if there are a ton of clicks and no sales, then the Hot Deal ain't so hot for the retailer. As mentioned above, the thing that makes the e-commerce deals work is that people actually buy the items that are advertised.

Classifieds in comparison, is a relatively small portion of our revenue, but in the tough times that we are in right now, we need everything we can get.

Tough times is why we have casino popunders (man, I HATE popups and popunders) on my site. Tough times is why we advertise golf products (I hate golf), on my site. Tough times is why RoadbikeREVIEW doesn't have it's own site manager, even though you guys deserve it. Tough times is why I don't have all the latest products in the database. Tough times is why I can't always delete flames on the message boards about whether someone should post stuff about their crash or not.

Funny, I didn't mean for this message to come out as such a bummer, but it seems to have turned into one. Sorry about that, and thanks to all of you for your continued patience and support. And I still really do love my job, and I still really think it is the best job in the world! I'm just trying to make sure that it stays that way!

-gregg, Site Manager RoadbikeREVIEW and Site Manager of that "other" site.
gkato@roadbikereview.com
Thanks Gregg (nm)Dave Hickey
May 13, 2002 8:09 AM
re: For Dave H and Scott G: re:How RBR makes money (long)t-bill
May 13, 2002 8:34 AM
Thanks for the info. I'll try to do my part to boost revenue because I believe this site is a very valuable resource.

Keep up the good work! The popunders are a small price to pay for the informational and entertainment value.
Unfair commentmuncher
May 13, 2002 8:49 AM
The site service here is about the best I have found - problems get sorted quickly and efficiently - take my (and others') problem with the incredible streaming pop-ups the other day.

Half the e-enquiries I make to retailers on their own sites (most recently in connection with buying a car, for chrissakes) don't even get an answer. My bank NEVER answers questions on it's so-called "on-line enquiry line". And of course none of us pay a penny for this site, despite its value.

You run the site(s) like a Swiss watch - take some credit.
thanks Muncher...gregg
May 13, 2002 9:04 AM
...for the compliments. I'm glad I was able to help with that one, but I can't help but wonder how many other people are having problems that either: a.) don't post or email about it or b.) I don't see their post or email?

I know, I'm too much of a pessimist. I'll shut up and take some credit :-)

-g
Funny Money (or...What is your financial structure?)Kristin
May 13, 2002 9:02 AM
Gregg,

Does RBR operate as a separate entity from the other consumer sites or are all the sites considered one company? I also spend time at OutdoorReview and have even linked thru to some purchases on their site. Do you guys play in the same sandbox or each have your own? Just curious.
ConsumerREVIEW operates as a company as a whole...gregg
May 13, 2002 9:07 AM
...with all of the sites working with a common overall revenue target. So if you do more shopping on OutdoorREVIEW, you are still helping out RoadbikeREVIEW as well. And thanks for shopping with us!

-gregg
Thanks Gregg, I'll try to help where I can (nm)Scot_Gore
May 13, 2002 9:19 AM
Your website is great, only one remark:PeterRider
May 13, 2002 10:35 AM
Hi Gregg,

your website is great, I get a ton of information by reading the discussions, and I already bought 2 bikes through your classifieds.

Only one remark about the classified section: when you try to sort the ads according to price or year or size, it just doesn't work. Also, the search engine is not really useful since it seems to look for the words in the entire ad text. I would prefer if it looked only in the titles of the ads, or otherwise if it was possible to choose between title search/text of ad search.

Thanks,

Pierre
Pierre, a couple of tips/answers for you...gregg
May 13, 2002 1:20 PM
...the sorting by a certain header DOES work, but you have to take into account that the priority placed ads will appear above other non-priority placed ads when you do this. Also, you may have to scroll a few pages in a popular category (like complete bikes) in order to see the sorting pattern.

I advise everyone to use the "advanced search" option instead of the default search, which is admittedly, a little too broad. In the advanced search, you will have more options to narrow your search down a lot.

-gregg
re: For Dave H and Scott G: re:How RBR makes money (long)Icefrk13
May 13, 2002 11:35 AM
Gregg this site is awsome. I actually use several of your sites ... Outdoorreview, mtbr.com and Photogarphy.com and have to sya they are all great but my favorite be far is this one. It keeps me sane in an insane world.
thanks for the kudos....gregg
May 13, 2002 1:21 PM
...I must say that they sometimes have the opposite effect for me and can sometimes drive me crazy! (on some days, anyway)

-g