Rediff redesign: No more ads on homepage

Rediff.com (a leading Indian web portal) has launched the new design with minimal stuff on it. Lot more clean and tidy. The focus is essentially on search, as Ashish writes at pluggd.in:

The bet is very simple – content game hasn’t worked (the good news is that it’s not working for others as well). Search has higher CTR (clickthrough rate) and that’s where the monetization might work for Rediff (though the search intent falls under Google’s purview!)

Another thing to note is ads are gone from homepage now. This means better user experience but a drop in short term revenue for rediff. Given they are struggling to retain users, this move looks good.

I appreciate the new design much more. But, like earlier I won’t use it. Also, looking at initial reactions, I doubt if this design will appeal to their existing users. Their focus on search can actually prove fatal.

Did they forget Next button?

Search results do not show a next button, though previous button is present. :P

Rediff mobile is still the same heavy site. I hope its redesign will follow soon.

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Yahoo! acquires IndexTools

Early this week, Yahoo acquired IndexTools, an analytics company. IndexTools offers tools for monitoring and analyzing websites.

The interesting thing, which happened the very next day (10th April) after the acquisition, was an email send by Google Analytics team to all (or many) analytics users notifying about the benchmarking feature, which was launched on March 5th!

The email stated:

“We are writing to let you know about a change in our service offerings. If you have logged into your account recently, you may have noticed that you can now choose to share your Google Analytics data. … We’re also happy to announce industry benchmarking as the first new feature available …. Benchmarking lets you compare your metrics against industry verticals….”

I feel the email, on the next day of acquisition was not a coincidence, rather Google wanted to try its best to avoid any chunk of users migrating to Yahoo/IndexTools. If Google just had to notify the analytics users about the service change, they must have done this a month back.

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Add more life to your photos!

Last week, Flickr introduced the long awaited feature to add video clips.

Flickr videos come to users with few restrictions:
1. Videos can be uploaded only by pro members though anyone can see them
2. Videos can be atmost 90 seconds long
3. No more than 150 MB per video. (Well, I do not see any 90 sec video going beyond 150MB)

The restrictions are more seen as a way to avoid illegal videos coming in and infringing copyrights. The goal is not to have another youtube but rather a place where you can upload videos that you have created.

As noted by Michael Arrington, the feature to play videos from thumnail screen is just awesome!

Videos can also be embeded in webapages just like this:

We at MyBlogLog, immediately updated “New with me“, to show the distinction amongst the flickr videos and photos.

Mostly videos have been taken up as positive move. But, there are segments of flickr users, who are opposing the videos. They have started groups on Flickr opposing videos (like No video on flickr) and have been posting photos to support their protest. Techcrunch has even started a poll: “Do you support video on flickr“? As of now, people supporting video are 14% more than the counterparts.

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