Archive for the ‘trulia’ Category

2008 Predictions

December 30, 2007

Real Estate 2.0 Predictions

Redfin will run out of money. Unable to raise another round, they will enter the TC deadpool towards the end of 2008. The company’s assets will be listed on Ebay and the reserve price will not be met. Glenn Kelman (CEO) will go back to school, get that MBA from Harvard and become an owner/operator of a Quiznos sandwich franchise. Subway sandwich artists around the country will cry foul.

Since every major real estate company that signed up with Trulia has now inked deals with 993+ me-too real estate search sites (including my 14 y/o neighbors startup), Trulia’s initial successes have become null-and-void. Agents and brokers will continue to feed their listings to as many sites as possible, making it impossible for Trulia to gain a competitive advantage or any real traction. Trulia will continue to operate throughout 2008 but Bjorn and Sven will sell cheap (2nd quarter 2009) and start their search for the next big thing (they will utilize heat map technology to discover their next endeavour).

Zillow will continue to display declining values to a shrinking pool of real estate masochists. Agents will realize that paying $0.01 per ad impression ($10CPM) to put themselves in front of the wrong audience is a losing proposition. Zillow investors will push the company to ramp up the marketing spend and we will see a Zillow commercial during the Super Bowl. Zillow’s revenues will not support an IPO and the company will be sold to Yahoo! towards the end of 2009 or beginning of 2010 for a small profit.

Craigslist will introduce a small fee to post in the real estate section. Everyone will pay it.

Greg Swann will start a cult. The BloodhoundBlog Unchained Conference is the opening he has been crafting in his head since he was 4 years old. All conference attendees will be deloused, forced to remove their shoes/socks and don a robe of hemp for the initial weekend of re-education. Their brokers will never see or hear from them again.

Companies That Know They Suck

October 17, 2006

companies that suck

Here is a funny list of domain name registrants I put together…Since this is a real estate related site – I started out with a few of the “big real estate guys.”

Domain Name: HOMEGAINSUCKS.COM

Registrant:

HomeGain.com, Inc.
1250 45th Street
Emeryville, CA 94608
US

Record expires: 22-Dec-2007
Record created: 22-Dec-2004

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Domain Name: ZILLOWSUCKS.COM

Registrant:

Zillow.com
999 Third Avenue
Suite 4600
Seattle, Washington 98104
United States

Created on: 01-Sep-05
Expires on: 10-Nov-07

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Domain Name: TRULIASUCKS.COM

Registrant:

Trulia
500 Treat Ave
San Francisco, California 94010
United States

Created on: 21-Sep-05
Expires on: 21-Sep-07

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Domain name: upssucks.com

Registrant:
 
United Parcel Service
340 MacArthur Blvd
Mahwah NJ
07430
US
 
Created on: 1997-12-31
Expires on: 2006-12-30

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Domain Name: googlesucks.com

Registrant:

Google Inc. (DOM-258923)
1600 Amphitheatre Parkway
Mountain View CA
94043 US
 
Created on: 1999-Oct-15.
Expires on: 2007-Oct-15.

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Domain Name: YAHOOSUX.COM

Registrant:

Yahoo! Inc.
701 First Avenue
Sunnyvale, CA 94089
US

Created on: Fri, Sep 24, 2004
Expires on: Mon, Sep 24, 2007

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Domain Name: AMAZONSUCKS.COM

Registrant:

Amazon Technologies, Inc.
P.O. Box 8102
Reno, Nevada 89507
United States

Created on: 08-Apr-02
Expires on: 15-Apr-08

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Domain Name: aolsucks.com

Registrant:

AOL LLC
22000 AOL Way
Dulles, VA 20166
US

Creation Date: 22-Jan-1996
Expiration Date: 23-Jan-2007

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BLOGGERSUCKS.COM = Available!

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Domain Name: CNNSUCKS.COM

Registrant:

Cable News Network LP, LLLP
One CNN Center
Box 105366
Atlanta, GA 30348
US

Record expires: 01-Mar-2007
Record created: 01-Mar-1999

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Domain Name: FEEDBURNERSUCKS.COM

Registrant:

Burning Door
211 W. Wacker Dr.
Suite 1130
Chicago, IL 60606
US

Record expires: 08-Jun-2008
Record created: 08-Jun-2005

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Domain Name: BLOCKBUSTERSUCKS.COM

Registrant:

Blockbuster Inc.
1201 Elm Street
Dallas, TX 75270
US

Record expires: 22-Nov-2006
Record created: 06-Sep-2003

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Domain Name: GODADDYSUCKS.COM

Registrant:

GoDaddy.com
14455 N Hayden Rd.
Suite 219
Scottsdale, Arizona 85260
United States

Created on: 15-Apr-02
Expires on: 15-Apr-07

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Domain Name: ORBITZSUCKS.COM

Registrant:

Orbitz
200 South Wacker Drive
Suite 1500
Chicago, IL 60606
US

Record expires: 06-Aug-2007
Record created: 06-Aug-2003

trulia – I don’t like it

September 15, 2006

trulia

Today I am going to take a look at trulia.  I am going to point out some strengths and some weaknesses, and then I will give you my take.

Strengths:

1. Although trulia is considered “web 2.0,” they have done an almost flawless job with their web 1.0 SEO efforts (with the exception of adhering to w3c standards – their San Diego listings page shows 182 errors).  The site’s architecture is set up exactly the way it should be…unfortunately, their programmers wrote some ugly code.  It’s nice to see a 2.0 company that still worries about search engines, even if their programming team is what I would consider second rate.

2. Trulia does a great job at implementing RSS feeds.  Although RSS is still very far from being main-stream, geeks love it, and it meshes nicely with real estate.

3. They have been able to do a good job with PR.  PR is the most important strategy for a web 2.0 business today.  When meeting with a VC, you get to say things like “we haven’t spent anything on advertising.”  Then you get to say things like “our growth is organic” or “our growth is viral.”  Everyone likes that.

Weaknesses:

1. No inventory.  Sure, trulia has a ton of listings…maybe 2% of the listings in each market they serve (probably less).  Why in the hell would Joe Buyer want to look at 2% of the available homes for sale in his market when he can visit any local IDX site and view everything?  So he can play with a map? 

2. Slow, slow, slow.  When you use trulia it feels like you are on a dial-up connection.  The pages take forever to load – if you accidentally mouse over something, it slows everything else down.  The site is just dreadfully slow.

3. I think the two points above are fatal.

My Take:

First: What it comes down to is this.  Using trulia is a waste of time.  If I am a serious buyer, I do not want to visit 15 websites (not even 2 websites) to see what is available.  I want to go to one website – and I do not want it to feel like I am on a 14.4 modem.  Trulia will never have a meaningful percentage of the market (unless they join every MLS in the country).

Second: As far as agents and brokers using trulia – Its pretty simple, trulia is a pimp – and if you feed them all of your listings, you are a whore.  Without your listings, trulia would not exist…they should be paying you for content…not the other way around.

Sure, they may not be charging you anything right now, but a good crack dealer never does.  When you find yourself dependent, you better believe you will be paying the piper. 

If you want to spend your time and money building businesses for other people, give me a call – I can help you out with that.