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Selecting a Web Content Provider


 

   

Selecting a Web Content Provider

Related pages:
Introduction to Web Content Providers

How to Build Site Traffic with Compelling Content
Content Providers, Current Awareness Solutions & Content Syndicators

With numerous Web content providers to choose from, which one should you select? The answer is absolutely, unequivocally..."it depends." I've worked at one time or another with most of these vendors, and they all have their strengths (and limitations). Which provider is right for your company and your information needs depends upon what type of information you want to communicate, who you want to communicate with, how you want to distribute the information, and of course your budget.

Factiva, NewsEdge and YellowBrix are all content syndicators, meaning that they supply information directly to your Web site, intranet or extranet. Visitors are generally not directed off of your site. Both Factiva and NewsEdge offer in-depth company and industry research reports as well as news, and both are also strong in archiving historical information. YellowBrix offers excellent integration of news and financial information, and has a mature, robust automated email marketing tool.

In the past, two limitations of these tools have been the number of sources they draw information from, and the timeliness of their information. However, these vendors have made strides in these areas, with, for example, Factiva now offering a current-awareness solution and NewsEdge now pulling from 11,000 sources (as of June 2005). That leaves one major drawback, which is cost; because the providers are buying this information from the original sources, that cost has to be passed along. Two other considerations are that, in some cases, you'll be required to post the information securely (e.g. on an intranet or extranet) rather than on your public Web site, and that, again in some cases, your cost will vary depending on the number of news views (e.g. site visitors, log-ins or newsletter recipients) you provide, making this expenditure somewhat more difficult to budget.

LexisNexis provides news and research with a focus on legal, accounting, public sector, insurance / risk management, and academic users.

MarketWatch and QuoteMedia are both financial market information oriented.
MarketWatch is a bit higher-end, providing commentary in addition to market
news and stock prices. QuoteMedia's stock-tracking tools are reasonably priced (although your costs can escalate quickly if you start adding some of their cool options) and easy to integrate, although light on the news side (largely limited to the major wire services).

Moreover's focus is on current awareness, and at that they shine. Their key strengths are the vast number of sources they scan and the timeliness of the news (feeds are updated every 15 minutes, and there are cases with certain
e-newsletter publishers where Moreover will pull a story as much as nearly a full day in advance of the newsletter publication). Because it is not a syndicator, Moreover's cost is also lower.

The primary limitation of Moreover is that it links to each original article source, which is to say, its links take visitors away from your Web site (albeit in a new browser window, so your site does remain open). This has to be weighed, however, against the advantages of their approach: a large number of sources, the ability to add new sources quickly, timeliness and price. They also keep your cost more predictable; Moreover charges a flat annual fee based on your requirements, whether your site gets 20 visits or 20 million.

The other limitations of Moreover are a lack of financial market integration (though this can addressed by using their service in conjunction with another like QuoteMedia) and a lack of archiving capability (though in fairness, they are a current awareness provider, not an archival service; if archiving is needed, you can use Moreover in conjunction with a tool such as Backflip - this requires some manual effort, but it's free).

Finally, WebClipping is among the lowest-priced of these services, but is designed for internal company information delivery rather than Web publishing. It's strengths are as a reputation management, competitive intelligence and/or industry research tool.

Related pages:
Introduction to Web Content Providers

How to Build Site Traffic with Compelling Content
Content Providers, Current Awareness Solutions & Content Syndicators

 

 
 
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