Monday, April 03, 2006


Claria (one of the most reviled adware companies to date) is now reborn as PersonalWeb. As I referred in a recent post, the personalization of the web is going to have some impact. Claria has essentially taken their traffic-snooping technology and converted it to a service that automatically presents relevant content in a personalized homepage. Hate to say it, but that's pretty cool :)

Claria found that users who personalize their pages use them more and spend twice as much time with their favorite publishers than people who have a more generic home page. Sounds rational. PersonalWeb/Claria then serves up ads on the homepage itself (again contextually related to a users' actual searches /sites visited). On this basis they just raised $40MM from Softbank, Sand Hill Capital and others.

To reiterate: With personalization of the web gearing up pretty quickly it's important for eCommerce, content and online service providers to enable themselves via web services (take the eBay Widget as an example). Requiring users to come to your site directly will become increasingly difficult as personalized access points to the Internet (like PersonalWeb or become more relevant. Choosing between competitive content/service sites that I can engage with directly from my 'owned' homepage or those that force me to their URL won't be a choice at all...


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