Another one of those, I wish I had thought of that... :)
Hmm I dunno. I understand the concept on type ins but do or will people actually type in [zipcode].com? I just can't see it happening much at all ...
>>Wonder how long the search engines will allow the competition to rise up in the ranks?
A critical consideration ~ that is both a quality of content issue for the publisher and SE as well as a competition question for the SE. Many believe that Google in particular will at some point stop the authoritative promotion of local based directional media competitors. Others feel that objective result-set display positioning is what enabled G to be who they are today - and to try to erase such foundation through nepotism based strategies would be mistake. In the case of G, I tend towards the later. In the case of Y, the former. Such has and will remain their differences.
With respect to the Marchex strategy. These guys are without question very smart, agile, and diversified. Take one look at the holdings and applications of Marchex to get a picture. One may question, however, whether such a strategy ultimately makes it difficult to do one or two things very well. The zip code thing will make money, no doubt - Marchex is a master of arbitrage and monetization, but what really is it? Does it have value to the public and se's? Or like its Enhance network - just another second rate ad serving and publishing strategy that is more opportunitistic than a well thought out strategy aimed at long-term shareholder value. Time will tell but I wouldn't suggest that moves like this will enable those describing Marchex to use new words like Integrity.
Has the look and feel of a scraper - nothing usable there. Most users looking for a zip code probably aren't looking for local search stuff anyway, but more likely looking for a correct zip for a given area, so I doubt type in traffic is all that valuable in this case.
I file this in the "throw enough mud against the wall and maybe something will stick" catagory.
Marchex to a large extent relies on "type in traffic" with this kind of strategy. A recent article in Business 2.0 suggests that up to 15% of people type in what they are looking for right into the browser instead through search. I think there are some names like candy.com that might work but I am not sure whether people will type in "90210.com" to look for information. Marchex owns 100's of URL and they are hoping that in aggregate, they can generate enoungh traffic to make some money.
What I like is the simplicity of the concept.
Maybe they need Jake to provide the date feed. :)
This type of local search - "search by zip code" - has a nice viral or easy to market approach built into it.
Going to be lots and lots of players in this space.
Did they buy the whole set of zip code domain?
Buy the whole set? Not to my knowledge, but they've been accumulating them for awhile. The aftermarket for 5 number domains heated up earlier this year. :)
They do own most 5 number names - over 45,000 .coms and over 35,000 .nets.
Just tried 10001.com and they don't own that one. Tried my own zip code and came up with a small amount of useless, non-relevant info. Interesting concept they've got, but the execution still needs plenty of work.
I dunno about it all. Local businesses may fall for it, but speaking from the customer end, I wouldnt have any use for trying to find businesses outside of my zip (or even in it) listed under zip code domain names. Especially if I have to look under all those headings. Most people around here probably know very few neighboring zip codes, though they do know the towns by name of course.
My zip here in MI has been taken as has the next one over. There arent enough viable businesses in that zip to bother with I wouldn't think.
I didnt spend much time trying to wade through myzip.com's general list's multitude of categories to see if any local businesses have participated.
I get enough junk snail mail to keep me abreast of sales at local stores. Why would I spend way too many minutes doing all that digging?
But, I have seen a non-internet related business advertising promotion locally that as well as apparently working well on its' own, would be great if tied together with a local business website.
In fact we're planning on trying that dual offer type approach when we leave the US to live in Asia later this year. Kind of like having our cake and eating it too.
T shirt weather there every day of the year..