Archive for the ‘TripTouch’ Category

Nice review

Thursday, November 27th, 2008

There’s a nice review of TripTouch in an Israeli web site (Israel21C). They also have a nice photo of Gil and me. I like this quote -

Launched in February this year, and still in beta mode, several thousands of people are already and traveling with TripTouch at their fingertips. Will you be next?”

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SEOing

Tuesday, November 25th, 2008

In the past few weeks we have focused on SEO - making the TripTouch site better for Google… It’s not easy doing this correctly - because sometimes the usability can get hurt - it’s a delicate game between a good site and a site that will rank good in Google. Obviously our aim is to never hurt the usability of the site - TripTouch is first a site that should be useful to our users.

In any case the Travel market is a very tough one - even long-tail travel keywords are usually competitive…

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Travel 2.0 Israeli Project

Monday, September 8th, 2008

From various reasons I decided to get in touch with other israeli web travel startups. I’ll share some of my imressions.

Tripcart is a trip planner focused in US. We wrote about them and our visit there a few months ago.

A quite similar project is TripWiser.  They also started with the USA but now they cover other worldwide destinations. They are based in the west coast, but the entrepreneurs are Israelis, so we are counting them as well. Even their US (compete) traffic graphs look quite similar to Tripcart.

Codeshare took a different direction. They started with a web service that was called Bemember. We found out about them in our early days and were afraid that our ideas were ’stolen’. Later they decided to approach the accommodation industry. Their main product is called Comcierge Lounge, it offers travel information and services to hotel guests.

There are 2 companies who take the B2B2C concept.
Ticketad  is quite a veteran, offering local events and attraction to their partner’s clients. will be interesting to see their upcoming new version.

I think the newest project is Truvle. They offer travel agencies revising the boring e-ticket and making it a marketing platform.

And don’t forget our project, TripTouch a widget based travel homepage covering 5,200 worlwide destinations with best of the web content and services.

I think it’s not surprising to see so many Israeli travel services, because Israelis love to travel and many of them have the entrepreneurship spirit.

Personally, talking to all of these guys, I think they are all talented and nice people. I wish us all the best of luck. and maybe, as one (potential) investor told me, a consolidation of some kind can be beneficial.

Well, that’s a challenge.


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TripTouch spotlight (hebrew)

Sunday, September 7th, 2008

There’s a cool blog post in Oogiot about TripTouch - a company ’spotlight’ as they call it. I think it’s a good read if you want to learn more about our company. But it’s hebrew, so it won’t suit everyone ;-)

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Our travel toolbar

Thursday, July 17th, 2008

We have just released the TripTouch travel toolbar. It’s a quick and easy way to access TripTouch from your browser. It includes the TripTouch widget, links to the site (your profile, friends, trips, etc.)  and some other cool gadgets (like radio and weather). Try it out!

The toolbar has been developed on top of the Conduit Platform. These guys are cool!

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Adding our widget to your site/blog

Thursday, July 17th, 2008

We now have an easy way for you to add our widget to your site or blog. You can follow the instructions in this page if you want.

In our personalized-pages (i.e. NetVibes or iGoogle) widget, your location is set automatically (by your IP address). You have the option to change it of course, and also to ‘fix’ your location. However for most sites this is not very good - if I have a site about London, for example, I want the widget to always display London, right? and not the visitor’s city. So in our new widget, when you set it up you can choose the location. Currently you have to enter the location-ID, which is our internal city number. You can find the number for your city here.

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alltop.com- an online magazine rack

Sunday, July 6th, 2008

I recently e-met Guy Kawasaki, who told me about his new project-   alltop.

It’s an digital magazine rack of many popular topics. The idea is to collect stories from “all the top” sites on the web. At each Alltop site, they display the headlines of the latest stories from dozens of sites and blogs. Some of the topics covered are: Travel, Startups, Venture Capital, Bloggers and even Israel, Religion and Sex (not porn!).

I tried the travel section and liked it. There are lots of interesting sources for travel enthusiastics. Maybe even to many, but you can hide feeds you don’t like.

Interesting to see how this project eveolving.

iGoogle gadgets

Tuesday, June 10th, 2008

Although our UWA-based widget works on iGoogle, we decided to do a ‘native’ iGoogle gadget as well, for several reasons - it works better (UWA is great, but it’s not 100% perfect), and it allows us to submit the gadget to more directories, and more importanly - widgetbox, which will hopefully work based on the new code.

Anyway, you can try adding it to your iGoogle page with this link. It looks a bit different and works a bit better than before.

Online Content and Conversion Strategies

Thursday, June 5th, 2008

Eyefortravel is organizing a conference named World Travel Market this November.  One of the conferences is ‘Online Content and Conversion Strategies’. I was asked for my input on this topic:  What functionality and usability is essential to engage customers online, and what rich media can enhance their online experience.  How can you maximize conversions and yield online.   

These are the key question for online travel, and I think for web sites in general..

I believe there a few elements to address:

First, you need great content.
There are few strategies for this issue.
You can create your own content (LonelyPlanet, TripCart). The problem with this strategy is that it’s almost impossible to create and maintain updated information for many destinations. So you need either to be very rich or to narrow your scope. Also, it’s a pity to create content because there’s so much around anyway.
Another option is to utilize user generated content (Wikitravel, Virtualtourist). To do this you need a really large community. Another pitfall is that most UGC platforms encourage mainly tips and reviews, which are not very accessible and easy to use.
Our strategy here at TripTouch- which not surprisingly I think is the most appropriate- is to aggregate and integrate content from many relevant sources. We try to give our users the best and most updated information available.

The second element in my opinion is usefulness: simplicity and ease of use. We believe that a travel site should be a useful tool, and not necessarily the most beautifully designed. Designing the UI of TripTouch we tried to make it as useful and simple as possible. I hope we’ve succeeded.

The third issue I want to address is how to reach the audience. I believe it’s our greatest challenge. Our approach is to create a variety of means to use our service.
We’ve just released a widget that can be used in iGoogle and Netvibes.
We plan to create widgets for more platforms and find partners so our users can find us easily and to be exposed to more audiences.

Well that’s what I think, comments are welcome.

TripTouch is useful for college students…

Thursday, May 29th, 2008

Here’s a link I really liked - TripTouch is mentioned in a long (40+) list of useful mashups:

http://www.collegeathome.com/blog/…