Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Inbox Report: Open House at Hoover's

Visitors to the Hoover's ad-supported Web site are receiving one-day passes to the Hoover's Pro product online, similar in execution to other "open houses" trialed by other premium online services such as HighBeam. The promotion is also available to site visitors via ad links. Interestingly the single-line search box remains in the Pro product on the front page, with radio buttons that allow searching by company name, by ticker, stock quote, IPO companies, industry keyword, executive name, news and reports. The Pro front page has lots of great content promoting Hoover's features and at least in the Trial version includes ads still - similar in some aspects to the old ad-supported site. Not all features are turned on for the trial at the company profile level - for example, you cannot build reports on company profile pages - and ads still remain in profiles also, though fewer and smaller.

It's interesting to note that while the features of the Pro site are more desirable and more powerful, the overall look and feel of Hoover's recently relaunched free Web site is more appealing and conveys a greater sense of ease of use, even if there is less dense content. Hopefully the new look and feel will make its way into the Pro-level products bit by bit. Features presented on the free site are well designed and make it easy to like this product, but with more commonality of features that upgrade experience will become more natural. Open houses such as this are great tools for learning about what kinds of prospects are likely to upgrade into subscription products (and hopefully to get some conversions). The challenge is to be ready to gather as much data as possible from as many angles as possible on their use of the service. Enjoy the open house - feel free to share comments in this weblog.
Post a Comment