Interview On

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Interview On


While I was on holiday in India, Sudha Jamthe interviewed me for her site Startup Stories


I generally don’t like interviews, but I met Sudha at one of the recent Web Innovator’s meet-ups in Cambridge and found her to be genuine and insightful (being a startup person herself).


The site is relatively new, but they’ve already got some interesting content which is refreshingly different from your run-of-the-mill blogosphere stuff. 


Meanwhile, I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t provide some friendly pointers to Sudha and Sean (her co-conspirator) on the site and what can be done to make it more effective.  (Note to Sudha, I considered just sending this an a private email, but didn’t think you’d mind me doing it here as that way everyone can pick up a couple of tips).


Tactical Ways To Make More Effective


  1. They get points for the email signup form, but there should be an RSS feed that is “detectable”.  There should also be a prominent RSS feed button somewhere so folks know that a feed is available.


  1. Website Grader reports that their domain expires in 176 days.  Google (and possibly others) may see this as a potential sign that this is a splog (particularly given that their domain registration is new).  I’d advise extending the registration for at least 5 years.  It doesn’t cost that much and will likely help them get better search rankings.


  1. I like their survey that asks which story we’d like to read about next (a great way to draw visitors in and get valuable feedback), but it would be nice to get a short description of each of the companies listed since many of them aren’t particularly well known yet.


  1. Their tag-line “Real Stories.  Real Inspiration” should likely be in the top bar (right next to the “StartupStories”) instead of its current ,less conspicuous location in the right margin box.  This would give their readers a quick glimpse into what the site is about (though I must admit, the name of the site is pretty self-descriptive).


In any case, my thanks to Sudha and Sean of  I wish them luck with their efforts and look forward to other (hopefully more useful than mine) interviews.






Posted by Dharmesh Shah on Wed, Jan 17, 2007



Thanks for the constructive criticisms, and I agree with you on almost every point. To be completely honest, I had no idea that the SE's frowned upon a domain expiring in under a year. We'll be doing a major overhaul of the site in the near future and we'll definitely consider your suggestions during the implementation of that. Thanks again for the interview and your support!

posted on Thursday, January 18, 2007 at 12:17 PM by Sean

Sorry, this is a complaint/rant. Its been a long time coming, but finally I can't take it any more. Sadly its nothing to do with the article content, more the way your refer to place names. You mention Cambridge, but you don't say where. Cambridge, unqualified means Cambridge, UK. Why? Well, because it existed before the one in the US and it also has the world famous university. I'm not a graduate of Cambridge Univertsity, so its not a complaint based on the "I've got a Cambridge degree type of thing". But it really does grate seeing UK town names which have existed for hundreds of years being used unqualified, but implied to mean US. Even the rock band U2 state "we are from Dublin, Ireland", even though that needs no qualification. Could you imagine me writing an article and referencing that I'd been to Boston without qualification and expecting you to realise that I mean Boston, Lincolnshire, UK? Or Washington, Tyne and Wear, UK? Buts that what you are doing with this article. /end rant, normal service resumed. That feels so much better :-) Stephen

posted on Friday, January 19, 2007 at 7:31 PM by Stephen Kellett

Stephen: Point well taken. I will make a concerted effort to be more specific in my references. Thanks for pointing it out.

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