21 March 2008

Still untapped

Generation Next may be heavy users of the Internet, emails, IMs and social networks, but from a business perspective, everything is not cool for companies which provide Internet-based services to this consuming target group.

The fact is, GenNext wants it all for free. And they want more and more of it. Apart from mobilephone and Internet service providers which charge for usage (and, in some cases, for features like downloads and responses to contests or polls), no one has been able to come upon a sensible revenue-generating business model.

Search, email and IM/chat services (e.g. Google, Microsoft, Yahoo!, AOL), social networking sites (e.g. MySpace, Facebook, Orkut), blogging services (e.g. Blogger, Wordpress, Typepad), as well as services like Flickr and YouTube have all admitted defeat. There just doesn’t seem to be a way to monetise their ventures.

On the contrary, they all have to add new features, increase user archival space and improve their services to remain competitive.

Placing ads on user pages is, of course, being tried out. But so far, revenues have been dismal. No matter how many registered users these service providers claim to own, in GenNext category or otherwise, no one is making pots of money.

Considering the billions of users these companies service 24/7, economically speaking, it’s a huge market, still untapped!


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