When I woke up this morning and checked my email I saw that Larry had forwarded me a link to a new TechCrunch post about Mahalo’s new redesign and their new, stronger focus on liveblogging and keeping up with current news. Although Mahalo isn’t exactly in the same exact market as HubPages, they’re definitely in the same ballpark, so I decided to do some due diligence and see what the fuss was all about. Here are some thoughts that I have come up with after taking a quick glance at the changes this morning and how they compare with what we’re currently doing here at HubPages.
1. Mahalo is trying to do a lot of stuff – One thing that I noticed was that Mahalo is much more of a destination site than HubPages could ever claim to be and with their new focus on quick, up-to-date news and liveblogging, it seems like they’re pushing it even farther. When they first launched, Mahalo was claimed to be Human-Powered Search, but here lately it seems like they’ve become a more well-rounded news aggregate/Wikipedia/Fark-ish type of content-infused beast on the web. There’s a lot of stuff going on over there and I’d love to see how they keep that bad boy pumped full of the goodies that are now showcased all over their homepage.
If you compare this to what we’re doing on HubPages, I guess that we seem to be a lot less glittery and sexy at first glance, but as I sad earlier, we’re not designed to be a destination site for the masses and I doubt that we ever will become one. We like to try to keep it as simple as possible and when we do have some extra resources we like to pump them directly to our overall goal of creating the best place to write content on the web. You’ll see what I mean here in the next couple days as we launch several new features and additions that make HubPages an even better place to publish your passion.
2. Mahalo is officially Fark-Tastic – If you have never seen the awesomeness that is Fark, then you’re missing out on some of the best links on the web. Fark’s goal is and always has been simple and straight-forward, they want to be the place for you to go to find links to stories that are interesting, entertaining, hilarious and newsworthy. I have had a few personal friends work in the radio industry and this was a must-visit each day for when they needed content to talk about on air.
After looking at the new Mahalo design I quickly noticed that a new section of Mahalo looks almost exactly like Fark, even down to Fark’s trademarked colored topic highlights. If I was Fark I’d be a little weary of this new section, but I guess that it’s the web and like they always say, imitation is the best form of flattery. Here is what they look like side-by side, with Mahalo on the left and Fark on the right:
Yeah, pretty similar, eh?
3. I have no idea how they’re making money – I’m no web monetization expert by any means, but after looking at Mahalo I have absolutely no clue how they’re making any money. With over $21 million of investment dollars and 40+ employees, I’m sure that they have some type of plan – I just have no idea what it is.
On HubPages we try to make it much more simple:
- We provide a platform to easily create engaging content
- You plug in your ad networks of choice (AdSense, etc.)
- We optimize your ads with our YieldBuild technology and split all revenues, with 60% to you and 40% to us
The better the content that you write, the more money that we all can make together as a big, happy HubPages family. Ok, now let’s all hug.
So, like I said – those are my initial thoughts on this redesign and if I see any other significant changes on any other site out there that catches my attention, I’ll be sure to do this again.