April 13th, 2007
There are a few questions we’ve heard a number of times. Here are a few of them, answered for all to see:
- Q: Who designed all the graphics - they’re pretty!
A: Wishlisting co-founder, John.
- Q: How does the search work? What is it searching?
A: The search on the front page will search all of the wishes on the site, and augment those results with results from Amazon.com. Eventually, when we have lots of wishes, we’d love to simply search them all without going to Amazon. For the time being, we want to do our best to find exactly what you’re looking for, even if no one has wished for it. The search takes longer than we’d like, with the hope that we’ll be presenting you with more relevant information. (Even still, the Amazon.com search engine has some relevance issues which I’ll save for another post.)
- Q: Okay, I signed up… now what, exactly?
A: A lot of the work we’ll be doing in the next few months is to help make it clearer what the site can be used for and how to get up and running with it. At the most basic level, what you’re doing is building a wishlist. You can put things on to your wishlist in one of 3 ways:
- Search for it on our site, and add it.
- Use the browser button (Firefox/IE extensions coming soon) to add anything from any other store to your list.
- Create a totally new custom item called whatever you want with whatever picture you want.
- Q: How do you guys make money?
A: We don’t! Ok, (half) joking. The site is free to use and will always be free. We make money two ways:
- When people buy things from affiliated stores. Currently, that means when they buy things at Amazon.com by following links on our site, and over time more stores will be hooked up. Our plan is to affiliate with the stores you like best, versus other sites which affiliate with whoever pays them the most money. The stores that appear on the site are all either Amazon (because they augment our search results) or sites that our users have entered. That’s it.
- Advertising. We don’t want to litter the site with ads. There are currently no ads on the home page, individual list pages, profile pages, etc. We currently have ads on individual wishes (you have to click into one) and the ads should be targeted to they’re relevant to the wish you’re looking at. We’ll be doing some experimenting with ad placement to figure out what’s the best compromise between aesthetics and visibility. Long-time beta testers probably remember when the ad used to be in the black banner.
- Q: Are you going to grant me wishes?
A: Maybe. If you’re good.
Also… a few more bugfixes and site updates:
- marthasoft noticed that our list of top reviewers was wrong, and someone with zero reviews was in there. Now it’s fixed, and now marthasoft is in there (coincidence?)
- I noticed that the “most popular” things on the front page really weren’t all that popular. That’s fixed now, and appropriately The Alphabet of Manliness is the most popular item.
- The front page used to flicker and show whenever you navigated to another link, like a person’s list, directly. No more!
- Kate pointed out that while you’re pulling up someone’s profile, the text said you were pulling up their wishlist, which wasn’t right. Fixed.