Sunday, April 20, 2008

Consumption patterns of Video, Blogs and Social Networking by Region


In its first survey, conducted in September 2006, a little over half of respondents said they read blogs. In the latest survey, over 70 percent did.

In the U.S. and Europe, consumers are avid consumers of social content while less likely to create their own compared to other markets.  A little over 60 percent of Internet users in the U.S. said they read blogs, but just 26 percent had created one, compared to over 70 percent of Internet users who blog in South Korea and China. Consumers in Asian countries are also much more likely to read blogs: 92 percent of South Koreans read them. In China, 88 percent read blogs.

While 30 percent said they watched video online in initial survey, over 80 percent said they had this year.

About a quarter of U.S. Internet users have uploaded a video to a site like YouTube. In the Brazil, 68 percent have done so. India, China, Mexico and the Philippines all boast video-sharing participation rates topping 50 percent. The results are similar for photo-sharing, where a little under half of U.S. consumers have uploaded photos, far behind rates in South American and Asian markets.

Social Networking
Less than 30 percent of respondents said they set up a social network profile in 2006; over 60 percent did two years later.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Link Building Ideas

Source: Original ;-)

If you are into link building on a long term basis, you can exploit following mediums seriously.
  • Yahoo 360 Blogs - Since it is a social blogging platform, you get backlinks from your friends. Create a cute and nice girl profile. Make tons of friends and write blogs with links. The entire system gets backlinks on bulk basis and it is internally transferred. More friends you have, more of them give you backlinks.
  • Myweb 2, Yahoo - Bookmarking platform, Here again, You can make a lot of friends and generate backlinks.
  • Squidoo - In the initial phases your links are nofollow, but I believe once you have enough credibility, you can dofollow links. Here again, the entire website gets a lot of back links and tag cloud helps you to get a share out of that to your pages. Create new pages on regular basis with more or less original content, write rich tag cloud and pray ;-). it's a long term game and if you are into serious SEO business, it's going to be worth it.
  • Hubpages - Similar advantage as Squidoo
  • FriendFeed - Make tons of friends, share your items and they appear on pages of all your friends.
  • Digg - Submit stories, comment on top stories, digg often and early on the upcoming sites who have the potential to reach top page. except 1st, you need to remaining to increase page rank of your profile page and thus give better page rank to submitted urls.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Click distribution by Google Search Result Position [Aol Data]


You know what you should be aiming for ;-)

Distribution of Clicks by Google Search Result Position


Eye-Tracking Analysis of SE Users’ Behavior

One of the most recent eye tracking studies was performed at Cornell University by Laura A. Granka, Thorsten Joachims and Geri Cay. They used a sample of undergraduate students instructed to perform search in Google for 397 queries o topics covering movies, travel, music, politics, local and trivia. This study has produced the following results.

Fig 1. Google SEPR Click and Attention distribution ‘heat-map’

Study Results: Clicks and Attention Distribution

As you can see from the graph below and a SERP ‘heat-map’ based on it, the first two listings capture over a half of the user’s attention in terms of time of the eye fixation. Whereas the attention is shared almost equally, the difference in number of click between the first two listings is much more surprising: over four times! After the second listing the eye fixation drops sharply. Search results number 6 to 10 receive roughly equal attention. Here an interesting thing is that the 7th listing gets less attention than the succeeding 8th – apparently here we can observe the effect of the page fold. The 7th listing is just below the screen edge and is often skipped as users scroll the page down to the bottom (during the study the 7th listing was clicked only once). On the graph you can also see the 11th listing from the second page of the search results. It gets only about 1 percent of clicks and user attention – 2.5 times less than the lowest ranked result on the page one.

Fig 2. Time spent on viewing each results compared to the number of clicks.

Often people consider getting to the ‘top-ten’ of Google as a measurement of the SEO success. Evidently this is a rather rough approximation. The ‘top-ten’ itself is a very diverse group with the number of clicks increasing almost logarithmically as your rank grows. For instance, the first five positions get over 88% of the traffic, and the first three – 79%.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Will slowdown affect funding in India


If you are an entrepreneur and apprehensive that the global market meltdown will strain your fund-raising plans, fear not. India-focused private equity and venture capital funds raised $7 billion (Rs 27,958 crore) in 2007, excluding real estate, last year.

Some noted VCs raised funds last year. Sequoia Capital notched up $300 million, Sandalwood Capital ($350 million), Matrix India Partners ($300 million), Helion Ventures ($210 million), VenturEast ($150 million) and Nexus India Capital ($100 million).

A partner at a VC company, said, “Wish there was a slowdown! We are screening so many proposals every day. The industry is rocking. Entrepreneurs with sound business plans will not have any problems in raising funds, even in these dull market conditions.”

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Warren Buffett in 2007 Annual Report of Berkshire Hathaway


“I’ve never gone to bed with an ugly woman, but I’ve sure woke up with a few”
- Warren Buffett

Fee structure of fund of funds


The Squadron Capital typically takes a 1 percent base fee and 10 percent performance fee. Squadron is expecting an internal rate of return of 20 percent, net of fees for the next Asia focus fund of funds [size: $400m]

Online Airlines Travel Agent Market Size, India


Online Travel Agent MakeMyTrip has recorded sales of Rs. 1000 crore for the financial year ending March 2008, as per a release. MakeMyTrip claims that it has 45% market share which implies that online airlines travel agent market is $500+ million.

Then, there is another fraction of airlines tickets that are booked directly on the airlines website.



"I like an escalator because an escalator can never break, it can only become stairs. There would never be an escalator temporarily out of order sign, only an escalator temporarily stairs. Sorry for the convenience."
Mitch Hedberg, Comedy Central Presents
American comedian (1968 - 2005)

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Mobile VAS market of Airtel [Bharti Telsoft]


Mobile value added service (VAS) provider Bharti Telesoft aims to increase revenues four-fold to $200 million in the next three years.

Currently, VAS accounts for 8% of the Indian telecom player’s mobile revenues. Research house Gartner projects a five-year CAGR of 45% in VAS revenues, which would then account for a fifth of telecom revenues.

Bharti Telesoft operates in four segments
  • business support system (where it manages royalty programmes, electronic recharge etc),
  • M-VAS (roaming),
  • mobile commerce (enabling financial transactions through cell phones)
  • mobile entertainment.
The company foresees 40% growth rate in its overall business environment.

  • Indian VAS market is stated to touch $10 billion by 2010.
  • Africa should be worth $5-6 billion
  • South East Asia about $8-10 billion.

Growth prespective of Indian Economy

  • According to Sequoia Capital Partner Michael Moritz, the venture capitalist who made 34,000% off Google - "Today’s Smartest Investors Are Asking about India (not China)"
  • Impact on US Economy
    • Manufacturing -- which is China’s strength -- makes up 41% of U.S. output and 11% of jobs.
    • Services -- which are India’s strength -- make up 55% of the U.S. economy and employ 78% of its workers.
  • Investors [in US] know that Indian companies’ return on equity is 21% compared with 10% for China.
  • India has more potential to grow
    • By introducing its “one-child” policy in 1980, China cut off its future number of young workers to support its aging population. China is growing old before it’s grown rich.
    • India is the fifth largest economy in the world (ranking above France, Italy, the United Kingdom and Russia) and has the second largest GDP among emerging nations.
    • 25% of the people in the world under the age of 25 live in India. In fact, 50% of India's total population is under 25... and research shows that younger economies grow faster than their older counterparts.
    • This proves that India is one of the slowest aging countries in the world with a middle class that exceeds the population of the United States and the European Union!
That’s why India -- not China -- offers you the safest and most explosive investment opportunity in the world. In fact, India’s cheap, brilliant and highly productive workforce has helped it become the first developing nation in history to use brainpower as its growth catalyst.

Make no mistake: India’s exploding demographic of low-cost, high-IQ, English-speaking brainpower -- without question -- will have a far-reaching impact on your investment dollars.

And even though India’s huge outsourcing boom shows signs of leveling off due to rising wages for local workers and competition from other countries looking to emulate its model, India continues to be the No. 1 country for outsourcing.

According to the National Association of Software and Service Companies (NASSCOM), India’s outsourcing industry is on course to grow at an annual rate of 25% to hit $60 billion in revenue for its software and service exports by 2010!

Indian CPAs prepared approximately 360,000 U.S. tax returns for 2006, garnering $40 million in revenue.

According to a study by the McKinsey Global Institute, if recent growth continues, India’s average household income will triple by 2025. Private spending is projected to skyrocket from $372 billion in 2005 to almost $1.8 trillion just two decades later, making India the fifth largest consumer economy in the world.

CPM Rates published by PubMatic


  • Small Web site segment: Less than 1 million page views per month.
  • Medium Web site segment: Between 1 million and 100 million page views per month.
  • Large Web site segment: Over 100 million page views per month.
  • Aggregate Index: Data for All Web sites is computed using a weighting of 65% large Web sites, 20% medium Web sites, and 15% small Web sites based on an estimate of overall traffic in the online publishing market.
  • In March '08, 76% of small Web sites saw eCPMs under $1.00, compared to 96% of medium and 94% of large Web sites
  • Across all Web sites, the range of eCPMs was $0.003 to $15.25.
  • eCPMs for technology and gaming sites are higher on average than other categories: $0.82 and $0.69 respectively, for March '08
  • Technology eCPMs have declined by 12% from January '08 ($0.92) to March '08 ($0.82)
  • eCPMs for social networking sites are among lowest by vertical, though they have increased 69% from $0.22 in January '08 to $0.37 in March '08
My take is that these numbers may be on the lower side, because PubMatic's initial set of users might be the ones, who are more stressed out with the lower CPMs in general and are thus a little more open to try out something which can monetize their traffic better than other publishers.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Matrimony Preference on Netizens


Netrimony preferences
  • Men want 61% educated brides 48% working wives 61% favour intercaste marriage.
  • Women want 68% to work after wedding 41% favour intercaste marriage 62% NRI husbands.
  • 50% members of marriage portals live in the five metros.
  • 79% of online matrimony surfers are well-qualified.
  • 70% men want wives between age 26 and 35.
  • 60% want partners from outside their community or city.
  • 64% men in Delhi are open to intercaste marriage, only 24% in Chennai.
  • 45% men and women don’t believe in matching horoscopes.
  • 62% Mumbai and Pune men do not care about fair skin, 36% in Delhi do.
  • While 76% men and women refused, 19% said “maybe” to disabled partners.
  • 88% Pune women wish to marry a metro man, 56% in Kolkata do.
  • 100 odd matrimonial sites exist in India.
  • 50% growth rate in marriage site sector.

India has some 38.5 million Internet users and nearly 60 per cent are below the age of 25.
Of them, 48 per cent are registered with matrimonial sites, 51 per cent with dating and friendship sites and 37 per cent of Internet users are into both the activities.
The year-on-year growth for matrimonial services is 130 per cent, while that of dating sites is 88 per cent.

Net alliance data
  • Online matrimony is worth Rs 140 crore, up from Rs 58 crore in 2006.
  • Visitors moving to the Net for matrimony up from 15% last year to 48%.
  • Over 12 million Indians use online matrimonial searches.
  • Matrimonial sites are now the 13th most popular mainstream online activity.
  • There are nearly 20 million members worldwide for the leading two sites alone.
  • One million success stories and 50 testimonials a day from happy couples for a top site.

In a recent survey, 80 per cent young people said they would not marry without parental blessings.

Google, Microsoft, Yahoo Market Share


In 1996, two thirds of all people online (66 percent) lived in the U.S. By last October, that had completely flipped, with 77 percent of the online population living in the rest of the world and only 23 percent in the U.S. The U.S. still has the largest total number of Web surfers (162 million a month), but China is catching up fast (with 96 million)

In China, homegrown sites such as TenCent, Baidu and Sina all reach more native Web surfers than Microsoft, Google, or Yahoo. In fact, the leading Websites in many big markets such as Russia, Japan, and South Korea tend to be homegrown as well. ** In India, this in not the case **

Search Market Share


Both Microsoft and Yahoo each have about 260 million Webmail users (with duplication), with Google’s Gmail bringing up third place with 87 million

Prevelant CPM Rates in India


Estimates of CPM Rates in India

CPM Rates of Top Players in India

Online Advertising and Gaming in India

  • They estimate that Indian Entertainment and Media Industry was Rs. 51,300 crores in 2007, up from Rs. 43,800 crores in 2006.
  • As per FICCIs estimates, the Gaming, Animation and Visual FX segment was at Rs. 1,300 crores, having grown by 24 percent in 2007, over 2006.
  • Online Advertising was at Rs. 270 crores in 2007, having grown by 69 percent. It’s projected to become Rs. 480 crores by end 2008, and Rs. 1,100 crores by 2012.
  • At present, advertising contributes 38 percent to the entire Media and Entertainment Industry’s revenues - having grown to Rs. 19,600 crores, up from Rs. 16,100 billion in 2006.
  • Online advertising was just 1.3 percent of overall E&M advertising in 2007.
  • The report projects that the E&M Industry will be Rs. 1,15,700 crores by 2012, growting at a Compounded Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 18 percent. Foreign Investments in the sector reach a high of around Rs. 850 crores (around $211 million). Of all the media segment, TV generated the most interest among investors.

Online Advertising Revenues


Display Advertising Revenues

  • Rediff: $15m, Yahoo: $12m, Indiatimes: $6m, Web18 Group: $3m, MSN: $2.5m, Sify: $2m, Naukri: $1.3, WebDunia: $0.8m, Others: $5m

Total Display 47.5

  • Search Advertising: $15m

Grand Total: $62.5m

Key trends that have emerged during the last year:

  • Search accounts for almost 24% of the total Ad Market
  • 90% of online advertising revenues go to Top 8-10 portals / portal group sites.
  • Growth in Online advertising over 2005 is close to 100%.
  • Most of the advertising is being sold directly by the Publishers. Ad networks still do not enjoy a noticeable share
  • Almost 30-40% of Advertising is happening through Direct deals between Advertisers & Publishers.
  • More and more advertisers are using online medium
  • Almost 70% of Online Advertising is happening for "performance"
  • Largest categories are Internet players & Financial services. These two together would account for close to 60% spends.

Investments in Food Business in India


Since 2003, these investors have put approximately $200 million (about Rs800 crore) into various types of companies which are in the food business. These deals rest firmly on glowing statistics: The food service industry is expected to grow 48% to Rs2,700 crore in the next two years after growing at a rate of 21% from 1993 to 2003, according to industry reports.

  • Cafe Coffee Day - $35m - Sequoia
  • Nirula's - $20m - Nevis Capital Partners
  • Specialty Restaurants - $20m - SAIF Partners
  • Satnam Agnri Products Ltd - $10 - $15m - Tamasek
  • Mars Restaurants and Skygourmet - $12m - Nevis Capital Partners
  • Radhakrishna Foodland - $10m - Warburg Pincus
  • Vallabhdas Kanji Ltd - $7.5m - Agronaut Private Equity
  • Yo! China - $5.5m - Matrix Partners India
  • Bakers Circle - GEM India Advisors
  • Crazy Noodles - GEM India Advisors
  • Kaati Zone - Erasmic Venture Fund

Report on Internet in India


Google has displaced Yahoo! in the Indian online world.

According to JuxtConsult (online research and advisory firm), Google is the most preferred website in India (29.3% prefer G, 26.6 Y!, Rediff 10.9% and Orkut 7.9%).

Infact, the combined Orkut and Google entity stands at a huge 37%!!

Though Yahoo stands second as far as preferred site is concerned, it does beat Google in brand recall (30% top-of-mind recall, while Google follows with 27.2%, Orkut - 4.5%, Rediff-11.5%)
Again, Google + Orkut > Yahoo.
As far as email usage is concerned, Yahoo is still the number one (53%), but it won’t be too long before Gmail eats up into Y!’s shares.

For job searches, Naukri’s share has declined from 50% to 37%! 

Yahoo! leads the mobile war and gaming war too, while new players like Zapak are growing rapidly.

Few interesting findings:

  • Only 17% Internet users in this country who come from an IT background as against 21% a year ago
  • Accessing Internet from homes are getting more and more popular with the rapid spread of broadband and other technologies
  • 59% of Internet users access the Net from their PCs. However, the place of work still continues to be the single largest place for accessing Internet at 78%.
  • 37% of the current Net users come from the top 10 metros.
  • More than half of the Indian online population comes from outside the eight largest cities. (i.e. tier II and III cities).
  • 19-35 year age groups accounted for 76% users last year, they now constitute only 67%.
  • 66% users came from SEC ‘A’ and ‘B’ classes in 2006, only 56% come from these classes now.
  • 28% Internet users own a car.
  • 34% Internet users own credit cards
  • 90% of Internet users have mobile phones
  • 41% prefer to browse online in English as compared to 59% a year ago
  • The India Internet population stands at 30 million.

So, what does this translates into?

  • Rise in local content (and hence local search)
  • Mobile is the way to go.
  • Internet is no more restricted to the young crowd (i.e. no more social nets please!) - There is a demand for mature products.
  • E-Commerce is set to rise.

Internet and Mobile Advertising in India

  •  As per a Lintas media report, Internet advertising in India is Rs 215 crores ( a 43% Y-o-Y growth)
  • Possibility of the market growing to Rs 2500 crores by 2011
  • Current mobile advertising in India is Rs 40 crores, expected to grow to Rs 500 crores by 2011

Orkut, Facebook and MySpace in India

  • Orkut, the Google-owned social network has grown by a healthy 35 per cent in the six-month period, and had 7.2 million unique visitors in June 2007.
  • MySpace, at 399,000 unique visitors in June 2007, grew by 33 per cent over the six-month period.
  • Facebook had 785,000 unique visitors from India in June 2007. Over the six months since January 2007, the number of unique visitors has grown by a runaway 230 per cent from 238,000 unique visitors in January.
  • Indians constitute about 30 per cent of unique visitors on Orkut worldwide.

Payment Modes on IRCTC


Modes of Payments, March 2008, IRCTC
  • Credit cards are the most prevalent form of payment on IRCTC website with 43% of all payment occurring via credit cards. Cash cards came in at a surprising, strong 28%
  • ICICI payment gateway (PG) accounted for 54%, HDFC PG accounted for 21% and Citibank PG accounted for 20% of all credit card transactions
  • Of the cash cards, ITZ Cash card accounted for 51% while DONE card accounted for 47% while TRANS I card accounted for 2% of the transactions


Internet Comsumption from Office, Gaming in India


Internet from office

  • 85% of online video consumption in India happens from offices. [source]
  • Work place continues to be the single largest place for accessing Internet - 78% access. [source]

 Indian Gaming Statistics

  • 2.8 million gamers in the country
  • 72% gamers are from higher strata (i.e. sec A and B cities); 80% of gamers are from top 8 metros.
  • 99% of gamers are from metros while small towns account for only 1%.
  • Indian gaming industry though still in a nascent phase, is evolving at a fast pace (@ 94% CAGR)
  • Mobile gaming contributes 58% of the total revenue.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Typical Bounce Rates for Internet Sites


Under 20%:
 Extremely hard to achieve and very good.
21%-35%: A good score and probably the one most should aim for
36%-50%: Cause for concern and investigation needed to see if it can be improved

Greater than 50%: Very worrying unless there is good reason.

Domestic Search Engine Market of India


According to a study conducted by Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI), the domestic search engine market is currently pegged at $50 million (Rs 200 crore), which is expected to touch $200 million (Rs 800 crore) in the next four years.

NRI Travel Market of India


NRI travel market alone is estimated at $2 billion annually while the VFR (Visiting Friends & Relatives) and foreign tourist travel market from the US, UK and Australia is worth about $600 million.

Share of Credit Cards and Cash Cards in Online Ticketing at IRCTC


From the total 16.27 lakh tickets booked online in September 2007, 22 per cent online payments were made using cash cards, according to Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) data.

In October 2007, 23 per cent of 17.2 lakh tickets were booked using pre-paid cash cards; and November saw further increase in cash card usage with online payments for 24 per cent of 17.8 lakh tickets being made through
prepaid cards.

The trend continued in December when cash cards accounted for 25 per cent of 18.4 lakh online tickets and January 2008 (cash cards were used to pay for 26 per cent of 18.8 lakh online ticket booking).

The share of credit cards for online booking has been hovering around 42-43 per cent during the above mentioned period, while rest of bookings are done using debit cards or Internet banking mechanism.

Angel Investments in USA


The Center for Venture Research at UNH today released their annual Angel Capital report for 2007. Angels invested $26 Billion in 57,120 companies, up slightly from last year. The report says there are 258,200 active angel investors in the USA.  By comparison, Venture Capitalists invested to $29.4B in 3,813 companies in 2007.

Software accounted for the largest share of Angel investments, with 27%, followed by Healthcare Services/Medical Devices and Equipment (19%) and Biotech (12%).

Angel Investors continue to be the largest source of seed stage and early stage start-up capital, with 39% of 2007 angel investments going there.

Mergers and acquisitions represented 65% of the angel exits, and IPO's 4%, in 2007. Unfortunately, bankruptcies accounted for 27% of the exits. Overall annual returns for angel’s exits were 27.7%.

Investments by Clearstone in India


  • Clearstone co-invested Rs25 crore in Elbee Express Pvt. Ltd, an express delivery firm.
  • Clearstone had invested about $5 million in Games2win India Pvt. Ltd, along with SVB Financial Group
  • It had also invested $ 8.5 million in Digibee Microsystems, a mobile handset designing firm, along with Sidbi Venture Capital Ltd.
  • Clearstone’s first invest in India was in June 2006, along with the State Bank of India. They had invested $7.5 million in BillDesk, a payments service provider.

Outbound Travel Market of India


The US is predicted to be the most preferred destination for Indian travelers in days to come and is set to receive 10.2% of outbound tourists from India by 2011.

With departures by air accounting
for more than 98% of all departures from India, the air travel market is "clearly on a high", Euromonitor said. The sales for low-cost airlines grew by 115% in India last year, "storming ahead" of the industry average growth of 19.5%, it said.

Tourism of India - Internal, Inbound and Outbound


In 2006, India attracted 4.43 million foreign tourists; the same year, around 350-400 million domestic tourists are estimated to have traveled around the country.

The outgoing travel industry is booming too: Euromonitor forecasts that outgoing tourism expenditure from India will grow by over 25.7% between 2006 and 2011 to reach a value of $21 billion by 2011 (Singapore happens to be the most preferred destination) (via ToI)

Online Travel Market in India


Online travel bookings are just 11% of the total 16 billion-dollar travel market in India but is expected to grow exponentially in the next five years. Over nine million Indians travel abroad every year but only a few make reservations online. The Indian online travel market is the fifth biggest in Asia and is likely to become one of the top three in the continent over the next five years and touch six billion dollars in terms of revenues.

SMBs and Establishments in India


Looks like Enterprise product companies have their Product Managers on Job. Out of the 3 company’s studied, all the 4 companies had a strong India focus. With about ~ 235,000 SMB’s registered with registrar of companies and about 6 million establishments (one employee beside owner) India is definitely a great market to sell enterprise software.

I have not talked about Desktop product companies here. With piracy level in India was close to 73 per cent compared to the worldwide average of 36 per cent and 23 per cent in the US and Canada there is a different strategy companies have to adopt in this area.

Conversion ratio in Freemium Model


Pownce,Kevin's new company, uses the Freemium business model. Free to use the basic service, but pay a premium for additional services. My survey of companies using the Freemium model showed an average of 3% of users will pay for premium services. Pownce is seeing the same conversion rate, and building a profitable business.

The consensus of the panel was that advertising is a good model if you have huge traffic that can be targeted, but all businesses should have multiple revenue streams. Freemium, subscription, pay for leads, and CPA (cost per action) are the most promising business
Mukul Singhal