Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Using for research.

I am often amazed when I think about how is such a great site to do research. One of the ways that Amazon was able to create a useful site was by llowing its users to write reviews. And then they went further by allowing other users to rank the reviews so that the good ones bubble up to the top.

I find many of the reviews at Amazon very helpful.

I notice that school teachers even assign there students to write reviews on amazon. Can you see the brand loyalty being created by students doing this. Kids who have reviewed a book will probably come back to Amazon to update their review or point it out to others to read. All the time creating more traffic for Amazon and possible more sells.

I often find myself on Amazon looking for one piece of information and the next thing you know I find another totally unrelated piece of information. This has got to be by design. And much of this great info provided by Amazons users. For free, at no cost to the company. I find this amazing, and wonder if a small online seller like myself can use this idea presented by Amazon to my own advantage.

Well as I stated I was doing research on Amazon, I was not there to buy anything. But Amazon probably does not care about that because sooner or later, I will buy something. If they can just keep me on their site for long enough. By giving interesting and useful data.

So here are a few ideas that I came up with after thinking about this for a little while;

a. Ask your customers what they think. They will give you some good info and add value to your site. You can edit what they input or do more research to verify some facts (who knows you may learn form this too). This may be done to ensure that you are getting good data, but ask and you will receive.

b. Get new customers when they are young. If you have not done it yet, figure out a way to get young customers to your site. Let them interact and possible leave feed back. You could create some life long customers by doing that.

c. Provide related information, this will be valued added to your customers / readers.

Because I want to practice what I preach, feel free to let me know what you think about this. Do you think any of these methods could be implemented by a small online seller? If so how?

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