Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Two oo's for success

The past few months I've been working on a web site that may eventually replace Wikipedia as the most popular encyclopedia on the net. Or it may not, in which case I will still have learned a lot. Initially I settled on the domain fastfunfacts.info. At the time I thought it was a good name, descriptive and clear, certainly with the .info extension. It was brand new so it took about 6 weeks before Google took it serious and really started to index the pages on the site (this is called the Google sandbox effect). However, by the time the site was out of the sandbox the name had started to fade a bit in my view. In particular the .info extension which I liked a lot but which turned out to have a bad reputation with a lot of people.

I also found out about Squidoo, a wiki-like site set up by Seth Godin, the marketing guru. I've read a number of his books and admire his outlook on things, so it's good that I didn't know about Squidoo before starting out. If I had I might not have started on my project.

Back to domain names - Seth Godin explains the name Squidoo by noting that many successful sites have two o's in the name (Google, Yahoo!, his own Yoyodyne). So he figured that any site with two oo's will be successful.

This was a few weeks ago, and at the same time, when I was browsing through the GoDaddy domain auctions that I've written about previously, I noticed a domain name that really struck a chord. I ordered it, and recently switched over FastFunFacts to the new domain name. It again places me in the Google sandbox, I hope that will not last as long as the previous time. I also hope that Yahoo! won't take offense, because our names have more than a passing resemblance. Of course my site is in quite a different field from Yahoo!, I hasten to add.

Anyway, I welcome you to the new Xayoo.


  1. Please tell me this is a joke. Please.

  2. So your role model is a spammer, your domain name is based on a superstition, and the "content" on that website targets 14 year olds trying to update their status from school. Sounds like one hell of a business model. Are you hiring?

  3. Oh nothingmuch, I love you.

    BTW, did anyone notice that the site he is going to replace, "Wikipedia" contains 0 instances of the letter `o'?