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Popular deal sites – October 2008

This is October 2008 revision of the Popular Deal Sites list. You can find the last month revision of the list here.

The change in rating shows the difference compared to September results and includes all deal sites from my database that meet Alexa Rank < 100,000 requirement. I am sticking with the original limit as moving to 50,000 seems to cut some interesting sites.

The winner this month is again buxr.com with a gain of (22.36%). I am really happy that my idea was sound and our project finally gets some recognition! The worst performer is again the anandtech.com forum with Alexa rank dropping like a stone at the rate of (-40.11%). Something is clearly going on over there. If you have a clue - chime in in the comments

#Web SiteAlexa RankPage RankOnline Since
1slickdeals.net (info) 868 (-20.06%)6 10-Nov-1999
2fatwallet.com (info) 1530 (-11.43%)5 29-Nov-1999
3dealnews.com (info) 4709 (-3.09%)6 20-Jan-1999
4deals2buy.com (info) 5756 (-24.32%)5 15-Nov-2002
5bensbargains.net 5923 (-11.42%)5 21-Mar-2000
6 (1)techbargains.com (info) 6219 (-2.57%)5 03-May-1999
7 (1)dealsea.com 7856 (-10.35%)6 27-Jun-2001
8 (1)dealspl.us (info) 8240 (7.43%)4 15-May-2006
9 (3)anandtech.com 8387 (-40.11%)7 24-Aug-1997
10dealcatcher.com 9940 (-0.59%)5 28-Jul-1999
11cheapstingybargains.com 11297 (-5.55%)5 20-Jan-2005
12dealigg.com (info) 11390 (4.21%)3 04-Sep-2006
13dealtaker.com (info) 12521 (-3.19%)6 08-Feb-2004
14spoofee.com 16890 (-3.89%)5 31-Dec-2000
15 (2)resellerratings.com (info) 18132 (-3.08%)6 18-Jun-1998
16 (1)edealinfo.com 18294 (-11.73%)5 12-Dec-2000
17 (1)dealsofamerica.com 18823 (-6.33%)4 06-Sep-2003
18 (2)xpbargains.com 19182 (-10.65%)4 29-Nov-2001
19 (1)gottadeal.com 25304 (14.84%)4 27-Jan-2003
20 (1)dealofday.com 27994 (1.46%)5 30-Aug-1999
21bargainist.com (info) 30772 (3.03%)3 21-Nov-2006
22couponalbum.com 35731 (4.39%)4 18-Jan-2006
23judysbook.com 38258 (-1.84%)5 11-Aug-2003
24 (1)savings.com 40458 (7.77%)4 20-Apr-1995
25 (1)bradsdeals.com 42835 (-0.66%)4 29-Jun-2005
26dealslist.com 56841 (-5.72%)4 18-Jul-2000
27 (1)bargaineering.com 60203 (-0.13%)2 01-Dec-2004
28 (1)passwird.com 63126 (-5.01%)3 28-Aug-2001
29 (6)buxr.com 67840 (22.36%)3 04-Dec-2007
30dailyedeals.com 68009 (0.15%)4 18-Feb-2000
31 (2)gotapex.com 71903 (-11.48%)4 29-Apr-1999
32hotdealsclub.com 73618 (-3.96%)4 27-Dec-2000
33 (2)ableshoppers.com 73706 (-5.9%)4 08-Oct-2000
34 (1)dealhack.com 79608 (-3.58%)5 06-Feb-2005
35 (1)deals.com (info) 85517 (9%)3 28-Feb-1995
36 (2)shopping-bargains.com 92061 (16.99%)5 20-Feb-1999
37 (3)hot-deals.org 92375 (-8.35%)4 10-May-2000
38webbyplanet.com 95894 (n/a) 4 (n/a) 09-Feb-2006

Popular deal sites – September 2008

This is September 2008 revision of the Popular Deal Sites list. You can find the last month revision of the list here.

The change in rating shows the difference compared to August results and includes all deal sites from my database that meet Alexa Rank < 100,000 requirement. I am sticking with the original limit as moving to 50,000 seems to cut some interesting sites.

The top gainer this month is buxr.com with a gain of (16.84%). It was really a surprise to me. I knew our site would break 100,000 threshold but I didn't think it would come out at the top! The worst performer is the forum anandtech.com (-38.47%) which was also at the bottom last month.

This month Google had a Page Rank update and it affected many deal sites in a negative way. Interestingly though that anandtech.com was one of the few who gained PR even though they lost Alexa rank. By the way, read this old interview with the founder. The guy was just 15 when he started the site in 1997!

#Web SiteAlexa RankPage RankOnline Since
1slickdeals.net (info) 723 (-14.04%)6 10-Nov-1999
2fatwallet.com (info) 1373 (-8.28%)5 (-1)29-Nov-1999
3dealnews.com (info) 4568 (-10.13%)6 20-Jan-1999
4deals2buy.com (info) 4630 (-10.77%)5 (1)15-Nov-2002
5 (1)bensbargains.net 5316 (-12.82%)5 21-Mar-2000
6 (1)anandtech.com 5986 (-38.47%)7 (1)24-Aug-1997
7techbargains.com (info) 6063 (-8.79%)5 (-1)03-May-1999
8dealsea.com 7119 (-10.13%)6 27-Jun-2001
9dealspl.us (info) 8901 (1.02%)4 (-1)15-May-2006
10dealcatcher.com 9882 (-8.22%)5 (-1)28-Jul-1999
11cheapstingybargains.com 10703 (1.61%)5 20-Jan-2005
12 (1)dealigg.com (info) 11891 (1.8%)3 (-1)04-Sep-2006
13 (1)dealtaker.com (info) 12134 (-2.21%)6 08-Feb-2004
14spoofee.com 16257 (-8.03%)5 (1)31-Dec-2000
15edealinfo.com 16373 (-6.08%)5 12-Dec-2000
16xpbargains.com 17335 (-8.66%)4 (-1)29-Nov-2001
17resellerratings.com (info) 17591 (-9.11%)6 18-Jun-1998
18dealsofamerica.com 17702 (-0.48%)4 06-Sep-2003
19dealofday.com 28408 (-1.46%)5 (-1)30-Aug-1999
20gottadeal.com 29713 (0.19%)4 (-1)27-Jan-2003
21bargainist.com (info) 31732 (-0.27%)3 (-2)21-Nov-2006
22 (1)couponalbum.com 37371 (-3.31%)4 18-Jan-2006
23 (1)judysbook.com 37568 (-4.94%)5 (-1)11-Aug-2003
24bradsdeals.com 42556 (0.37%)4 (-1)29-Jun-2005
25savings.com 43865 (4.57%)4 20-Apr-1995
26dealslist.com 53768 (-6.68%)4 18-Jul-2000
27 (1)passwird.com 60115 (-8.65%)3 (-1)28-Aug-2001
28 (1)bargaineering.com 60127 (1.96%)2 01-Dec-2004
29 (2)gotapex.com 64501 (-17.19%)4 (-1)29-Apr-1999
30 (1)dailyedeals.com 68112 (-4.61%)4 18-Feb-2000
31 (1)ableshoppers.com 69599 (-11.57%)4 08-Oct-2000
32hotdealsclub.com 70816 (-8.23%)4 27-Dec-2000
33dealhack.com 76856 (-4.83%)5 (-1)06-Feb-2005
34hot-deals.org 85254 (-10.99%)4 10-May-2000
35buxr.com 87382 (16.84%)3 04-Dec-2007
36deals.com (info) 93977 (10.85%)3 28-Feb-1995

Buxr Update: Launching New Contest

The project I launched with my partner last December has been consuming all my free time recently. It seems like my deal contests idea has picked up and we now have a few regulars who come to share deals every day. I work late nights adding functionality to the site and it seems to pay off nicely. No, not in monetary way. We have been in red since we launched and I don’t expect any profit for another year at least. Yeah, starting up is tough. ;-)

The experience however is greatly gratifying. On an average week day we get around 50-60 deal submissions and just about as many comments from our members. Unlike ProBargainHunter, Buxr is built around a generic open-source web platform and I enjoy the luxury of being able to add all the possible tweaks to make things convenient for bargain hunting and shopping, something I couldn’t have done with this blog. Wordpress is a great platform, but it is more like a Swiss Army knife. You can do many things with it but you will never be good at anything in particular.

So we have plenty of deals and comments at Buxr. What we don’t have enough of is opinions. Yes, opinions on shopping deals. The deals, even the best ones, don’t usually get more than 10-12 votes and this is not nearly enough to create a balanced out picture of how hot the promotion or a coupon really is. One - two members can easily sway the votes towards a certain niche/category. What is more important, members with friends can have much more influence on votes than those without (but this will probably always be an issue).

Either way, I think more participants would balance things out a bit and this is why starting next month we are launching one more contest. We will be rewarding members for inviting friends. Top 3 by the number of referrals will get cash prizes at the end of the month. We’ve got to find more people who could contribute to deal voting, and I don’t see how else we can do it effectively and without spending enormous amounts on marketing.

If you love bargain hunting and have friends who might enjoy it too, come and join us at Buxr.com for the next month contest. By the way, here is a photo and a guest blog post from our last month’s winner!

Buxr Update: Contests and Prizes

buxr prizes

This is a short update on what is going on at Buxr, the project I started with my partner last December. This month we officially launched deal sharing contests and so far they have been a huge success. In just several days since the announcement we had 66 new members who have shared 137 deals and received 12 daily prizes ($10 by Paypal).

There is more than a daily prize at stake. Every time our members share deals and make their votes on deals others submit they contribute towards the monthly prize, or to be correct a choice of three prizes that we put out for vote on the monthly contest page.

I have been learning a lot from these contests and already have some ideas on how they can be improved. The goal is to make them interesting and fun for both: deal submitters and members who come to comment and vote for deals. I discussed some thoughts in this blog post and I will put out more for discussion later as I learn more.

My little social bargain hunting experiment

Do you remember Modoshi? It is a deal site that launched in November 2006 and implemented a few interesting concepts that turned bargain hunting into a fun contest. The project eventually shut down but it really got me thinking.

  • Can a deal site be turned into a fun game where participants get rewarded for the bargains they recommend?
  • Can the site modeled around this concept be a successful and profitable business?

Ever since Modoshi shut down in summer 2007 I have been sitting on this idea. But I wasn’t just sitting, I was actually doing something. Read on to find what kept me sleepless over the past several months.

What makes people share deals?

Why people come to deal forums to post the shopping deals they find? For the most part it is because of the community. Initially they come to get information, feel thankful for the support they find and eventually come again to give back to the community that helped them. You could say that the community feeds itself.

Sometimes the site owners make an effort to help the community grow. SlickDeals encourages participation via reputation points the deal submitters receive from the peers. With DealsPlus each deal submission brings you closer to the next level - another star by your avatar. All these small attributes help the participants build their place in the community, help them feel useful and rewarded.

What did Modoshi do differently?

Why did I like Modoshi when there is already a number of striving bargain hunting communities out there? Because the team made an effort to improve on what some of these communities are doing. They have attempted to give the members a monetary incentive to participate and contribute. The incentives were offered in a form of daily and monthly contests that rewarded quality submissions and intelligent deal picks/votes which in turn brought a crowd of regulars to the site.

modoshi contest

In addition Modoshi offered a huge number of tweaks for efficient bargain hunting on the site itself. The amount of product data they displayed made me think I am looking at a control panel of an airplane. It probably was a bit overboard but it appealed my geeky taste and built an invisible bond with the site creators.

I liked the idea so much that I decided to recreate it in a slightly modified form on Buxr, the project I started with my partner last year. Here are the basics (and I encourage you to comment on these!).

The daily contest

  • Users submit deals. Every day one deal is selected “the best of the day” based on user votes and our own judgment. The user who submits this deal is rewarded a daily prize (currently $10 via PayPal).

The monthly contest

There are two ways to participate, via deal submission and via deal votes.

  • Users submit deals. We select the best and the worst deal of the day on a daily basis. The user who submits the best deal gains 5 points, the user who submits the worst deal loses 5 points.
  • Users vote deals up/down. At the end of the day we compare user votes with our deal picks. If a user votes up the best deal of the day, or votes down the worst deal of the day, they earn 1 point. If a user votes down the best deal of the day, or votes up the worst deal of the day, they lose 1 point.

The user who collects the most points at the end of the month earns the monthly prize (currently Apple iPhone).

buxr monthly contest

We plan to tweak these rules going forward as we learn from the participants, but the goal will stay the same, to build an exciting environment for people to come and share shopping deals, given whatever limited resources we have at hand.

Modoshi failed. Why am I doing this?

I strongly suspect a part of the reason why Modoshi closed was the lack of experience from the team (or the individual) who was running the site. Both my partner and I have been in this niche for a while and have come here to stay. Buxr doesn’t bring any significant revenue right now, not even enough to compensate for the prizes we offer. Yet we believe that the community around a deal site is the single most important side of a successful shopping affiliate business. It brings life, triggers conversations, helps with viral marketing.

Personally for me, it also gives a meaning to my life. I have always said that comments on this blog make me wake up in the morning and write more. Buxr is my new (more bargains focused) way to talk to you guys. The good part is that now you can initiate conversations as well! :-)




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