Wednesday, 1 October 2008

Vottle Rocket

Wall Street blues marks this month gone by but in Vottleland things are looking very colourful!

There is a lot to report on, so let's jump in:

- Flii is now open publicly (
www.flii.com.br) although it has not yet been officially launched : The team in Brazil is steadily working on some minor changes and customizations and have recently done their first 3rd party data import! All of this means the number of ads are growing steadily, and while the numbers are by no means significant as yet, it's providing a good platform for testing the system.

- We have also begun work on providing an interface for a basic edition of the site to be available to mobile devices.

- EFT and credit card progress for upgrades (Vottle Featured and Premium adverts) : In the next few days we will also be ready to accept payment for upgrades via EFT to complement our credit card payment mechanism. We have also improved the security around the upgrade process so that users no longer need to be registered or signed in to upgrade their adverts. We are trying to make the process as simple, safe and attractive as possible.

- The filter for trusted users : In our non-stop effort to keep Vottle safe/clean and free of spam, we have implemented further measures to help us in this never-ending battle. First off, we implemented a trust mechanism, whereby users who continue to post 'clean' adverts eventually become 'trusted' users, and will no longer have all their adverts monitored. This will free up much of the time spent on auditing adverts that are not likely to be unwanted, and letting us focus on adverts that still require auditing. We have also implemented warning notices on some areas on the site (Services, Business Services, Jobs) in an attempt to deter people from placing spam adverts.

- The favicon : The Vottle brand is now being subtly enhanced by the inclusion of a 'Favourite Icon' which should appear next to the Vottle URL in the address bar of the browser whenever the site is visited. It will also appear next to the Vottle name if the site is saved to a user's 'Favourites' list.

- The banner serving software : Our corporate banner advertising is also gaining some momentum, and we are finding ourselves having to cater to new requirements here on a regular basis. Up until now we have used simple custom built software to serve banners in a very basic manner, but we will soon be rolling out a fully fledged banner serving tool to cater for every possible advertising need. This will enable us to sell any type of banner in any manner a customer could want, while also improving our statistics gathering and still maintaining the entire system in-house, rather than outsourcing. This will keep Vottle as lean and mean rather than having to follow traditional outsourced methods where banner serving can be slow and beyond the control of the primary website administrators.

- The requirements for corporate banner advertising are also resulting in some layout changes on the site : We are shuffling some content around, most notably the removal of the detailed 'Vottle Specials' and 'Cool Posts' sections, which are now accessible from a link on the menu under the main search bar. This allows us to feature our skyscraper ads more prominently on the site. We will continue to look at ways to better utilize the site’s real estate. Watch out of our tag clouds which will also be appearing on the site in the very near future!

Posted by Ronnie Apteker

1 comments:

Riaan Snyders said...

Congratulations Ronnie. I know you have been working hard at it!