Wikipages.com is an online directory service which aims to provide users information about local businesses within New York City. The company was initially conceived by Benjamin Horst and with Tracey Donvito joining the Wikipages.com team upon its launch in January 2006.
According to Ben Horst, Wikipage.com is mainly a business directory but is going to operate on a platform similar to Wikipedia. The site is indeed actually developed using wiki software which will allow authorized users to add or edit content directly on the site. Although, the business idea is somewhat similar to Yellow pages there is a little difference in how Wikipages.com will generate its revenue. The Yellow Pages is a listing that consists chiefly of advertisements placed by companies in the directory. Hence a large portion of its revenue comes directly from these adverts. For Wikipages.com the goal is not to create a medium for direct company adverting but to serve as a repository for information about companies operating in particular locales.
Presently, the company has information on more than one thousand businesses listed on the site. The companies listed all operate within the city of New York with the majority spread across the communities of Greenwich Village, Astoria Queens and the Financial District of Manhattan. The company’s strategy for generating revenue presently involves the use of Google ads on the site, though the owners of the company did not indicate how much revenue this strategy was bringing in, they however indicated they were open to discussions from interested investors.
WikiPages.com also has a sister blog which serves as a medium for helping it generate traffic, Tracey Donvito a member of the Wikipages.com team is also a writer for Metblogs edition in New York and uses this as an avenue to also promote the activities of the WikiPages.com site.
The duo of Benjamin and Tracey have put in a lot of effort towards ensuring the site succeeds, however the site could do with some add improvements. A different theme style with a more realistic approach at making the site look like an actual website would improve the appeal of the site. Doing this will make it look like an actual business and set it apart from the now common practice of deploying wiki software and monetizing it with Google ads.
Competition in the niche where they are operating is also stiff especially from big players such as Google and Yelp. Google has a program where it encourages people to create information pages for local businesses and has a $10 pay rate for each page created. Hence, the duo would have to introduce a lot of innovative ideas into their business in order to be able to compete successfully.