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Interview with AskJeeves--New "Teoma" Search Engine.

Discussion in 'Gold Cafe' started by NamePopper.com, Sep 18, 2002.

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  1. NamePopper.com

    NamePopper.com Gold Member

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    A Look at Ask Jeeves and Teoma--by Robin Nobles

    Source:www.sitepronews.com | Robin Nobles, Director of Training, Academy of Web Specialists- www.academywebspecialists.com

    Recently, Jim Lanzone, Vice President of Product Management with Ask Jeeves, attended a chat session with students from the Academy, and he answered a lot of very interesting questions about Ask Jeeves' Web properties.

    So, let's look at this interview with Jim, and learn more about
    Ask Jeeves and their relatively new search engine on the block,
    Teoma.

    As Vice President of Product Management, Jim overseas the
    strategy, features, Web design, and product development for all
    of Ask Jeeves' properties, including Ask.com, Teoma, and Ask
    Jeeves for Kids at AJKids.com. Ask Jeeves is a top twenty Web
    property and is among the most recognized Internet brands
    worldwide.

    Jim began by giving some background information about Ask Jeeves and Teoma.

    "Ask Jeeves is one of the leading search engines on the Web, with more than 16 million unique users per month. We also recently launched a new search engine called Teoma (Gaelic for "expert," in case you were wondering).

    "Both Ask.com and Teoma.com are powered by Teoma's search
    technology. The difference between the two sites lies in the
    design and the features.

    "Here's an easy way to think about it: Ask is for `Passengers'
    (people who want help searching) and Teoma.com is for `Drivers'
    (people who don't).

    "Our company makes money by serving advertisements that are
    triggered by the searches people conduct on our sites. There are
    three main types of advertisements: Graphical (e.g., banner ads),
    Paid Placement (Sponsored Links), and a new program called "Paid Inclusion" (pay to be entered into our search index)."

    Is free submission still an option?

    Question: Can you still submit to Ask Jeeves if you have a site
    that answers questions, like we have been able to do in the past
    for free, or do you have to go through pay inclusion to get into
    either index?

    Jim: "Well, yes, if you want to submit, you need to pay. It takes
    special attention, and therefore resources, for us to take a site
    rather than simply crawl the Web as usual. But there are special
    benefits to paying!

    "Our editorial staff is much smaller than the old days, and the
    `questions' for Jeeves (what we call the `Knowledge Base'
    internally) are not emphasized as much as they used to be, so the
    exposure will be more limited...and it may take our editors quite
    a while to get to your site."

    So, you can still submit your site to Ask Jeeves for free, but it
    will probably take a while for your site to make it into the
    index.

    Jim: "For the search index, there is no free submit (for Teoma)."

    Question: Compared to, for example, the free add URL in Google,
    the one for Ask Jeeves makes you jump through hoops.

    Jim: "That's because it's quite an old program that was developed
    for our editors to review."

    Remember that Ask Jeeves was established to answer questions, so you have to "prove" that your site does, in fact, very effectively answer the question you're going after - which is a lot more detailed than a simple submission at Google.

    What about pay inclusion?

    If you submit to Ask Jeeves' and Teoma's pay inclusion program,
    your site will get visibility at both sites. The pay inclusion
    program is now out of beta, so the subscription period is 12
    months.

    Benefits of their pay inclusion program include:

    * Your page will be indexed within 7 days.
    * Your page will be refreshed every 7 days.
    * Your page remains in the index for 12 months.

    Cost?

    $30 for the first URL, and $18 each for 2 through 1000 URL's. For
    larger numbers of pages, you can use their batch processing
    facility.

    Visit http://ask.ineedhits.com/ for more information.

    Question: The Direct Hit site has been taken down, and traffic is
    being redirected to Teoma. What about the Direct Hit results that
    were being shown in engines like HotBot? Are those now Teoma
    results?

    Jim: "Yes, we still have Direct Hit on HotBot, as well as
    BellSouth and InfoSpace. DirectHit.com is redirected to Teoma.
    But some partners still have the old DH "pop" (popularity)
    results. MSN still has the Direct Hit results.

    "We will be merging pop into the Teoma technology sometime in the near future, but some partners still want it as a "one-off," and we are open to providing it."

    Question: Teoma does crawl sites on its own? Is that correct?

    Jim: "Yes, that's correct. Its index is currently featured on
    both Ask.com and Teoma.com."

    Question: A Web site with good link popularity then would not
    need the Ask Jeeves/Teoma paid inclusion program?

    Jim: "For a major site, that is probably true. However, for
    smaller sites, or sites that refresh their content frequently (or
    have many dynamic pages that are difficult for search engines to
    crawl), paid inclusion is still a great option if you really want
    the traffic. Paid inclusion sites are spidered weekly. Other
    sites are spidered monthly, currently."

    Question: When paying for inclusion for Ask Jeeves and Teoma, are the results shared with other partners? If so who?

    Jim: "Currently, no. However, we're aggressively pursuing
    partnerships that will extend our reach considerably. Not able to
    say who just yet, but the usual suspects."

    Question: In your FAQ's for Ask Jeeves/Teoma's pay inclusion
    program (http://ask.ineedhits.com/faq.asp), it states that you
    can't change URL's. Why?

    Jim: "Because it's considered a new submission. We're not able to
    put enough resources against it yet."

    Question: So in the future, we'll have the ability to swap out URLs?

    Jim: "We'll see, but I hear you. We are aware of Inktomi's
    program."

    Question: What's the difference in traffic between the premium
    listings and the "regular" search results?

    Jim: "Do you mean between Premier Listings (Featured Sponsor) and Paid Inclusion? There are two differences: 1) You are guaranteed that your listing will show up; 2) You are guaranteed that it will show up in a specific location on our page."

    Question: Are Premier Listings twice as likely to be clicked on,
    for example?

    Jim: "Premier Listing is really just an ad. With Paid Inclusion,
    you aren't paying for anything other than being included in the
    index and then being subjected to the same relevance algorithms
    that give us our other results, but with the other benefits that
    I mentioned earlier.

    "In terms of click ratio, I suppose it depends on how relevant
    your site is to a given query. The match rate of a site that buys
    ad space on our site is much more significant than one that
    purchases via paid inclusion for now."

    For more information about Premier Listings, visit:
    http://static.wc.ask.com/docs/advertise/premier.html.


    continued below...
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