Serial relauncher Technorati has revamped its website yet again, adding a blog/news aggregator to the homepage.
WTF is the ‘Technorati Percolator’?
The site was redesigned as recently as May, with a focus on video and music content. This was followed by a new homepage three months ago, but both these designs have been ditched in favour of the ‘Technorati Percolator’.
This is a Techmeme-style news aggregator, which ranks articles according to a number of factors – the ‘authority’ of the source and of the blogs that refer to it, the age of the post, as well as the density of links.
The homepage is also displaying articles from mainstream media sources for the first time alongside blog posts. Potentially a good move.
The splog issue
We have previously pointed out some of Technorati’s major issues with spam blogs, or splogs (automated blogs that simply lift extracts from an RSS feed, and re-publish with a link). It’s great to see signs of improvement in this area.
We recently conducted a Technorati search for posts that reference E-consultancy, and found that at least a third were splogs. This time around, just two out of the first 50 results were spam blogs, so this is a huge improvement.
By comparison, the same query on Google Blog Search produced more spammy sites (roughly seven out of the first 50) but returned many more recent results.
Having achieved impressive growth in visitor numbers earlier this year, from 3.5m users in January to 9m in March, the site’s audience has fallen slightly, though it has still doubled year-on-year, according to comScore’s numbers.
The measurement firm reckons that Technorati pulls in some 5.3m monthly visitors, up from 2.1m last year. Compete, meanwhile, suggests that it is experiencing minimal growth…
The revamped site is certainly an improvement on the previous version, and the company is wise to concentrate more on its core business model of blog search.
Whether people will use it regularly as a news aggregator is uncertain though, as the posts displayed in the Technology section seem quite random when compared with Techmeme. It also faces established / unshakeable competition in the form of Yahoo! News and Google News. Clawing market share from those sites won’t be easy.
Still, new CEO Richard Jalichandra is bullish, describing the new launch as “momentous” and “multi-faceted”. If the firm has retained a chunk of the $20m+ in VC money that it has bagged over the past couple of years then it still stands a chance of making it.