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Why Is Crowdfunded Gamification

Why Is Crowdfunded Gamification | Ecom Revolution |

Why Is Crowdfunded Gamification
When I saw the staggering difference between's pagespread (pages in Google) vs. Red Envelope, one of my favorite gift sites from back in the day, something very DIFFERENT was going on. 19,000,000 pages in Google. 
RedEnvelope 31,000 pages in Google. 

At first I thought the power of was in its User Generated Platform approach. Some of the power is in the framework, but another key driver is the soft gamification they employ to focus spotlights on some artists and product categories. requires email marketing since 19,000,000 pages means finding anything without curation is nearly impossible. Instead of straight curation based on a known competitive rule set gamifies much like a Vegas slot machine. 

Vegas slot machines use serendipitous condition. We pattern creating humans believe we create a pattern when we pull the single arm of these "bandits", but there is not Stimulus-Reward response. 

Randomizing "winning" means addiction is easy, quick and complete. randomizes their curation so each artist is sure their moment in the sun is around the next corner. One more pull of the single arm will surely produce a winning response. 

The risk of this gamification is the algorithm doesn't find content fast enough to put off an artist's desire to stop game play. The good news is's engine is the ONLY reinforcement. 

When an artist creates an site they drive social traffic to it and some of that traffic, since it is highly segmented and qualified, will convert creating the first round of reinforcement with no cost to other than the quickly depreciating community code. 

The gap between initial acceptance, use of an artist's social net to create their first conversions and the point when an artist stops game play is when's algorithm must rescue the content. With so much game play (19M pages), knows an artist's lifecycle probably within minutes of the change from phase to phase. 

So YES Etsy is gamified crowdfunding since the platform makes a tremendous return on the first conversions, those that come from the artist's push to their social net, and cost of new artist acquisition is reduced by scale and existing artist advocacy (something that is also mathematically predictable). 



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Why (Platform) Crushes (Website)

Why (Platform) Crushes (Website) | Ecom Revolution |
Etsy had more page views in January that it did in December, which is pretty impressive, considering the December holiday rush.

Via John van den Brink
Martin (Marty) Smith's insight:

Platforms Crush Websites is a machine. They have 100M pages in Google and are one of my favorite examples for Platforms crushing Websites: . 

Compare 100M to an old line gift retailer such as's 22,000 pages in Google and you see the devastation a platform capable of generated User Generated Content (UGC) creates.  

John van den Brink's comment, March 17, 2013 11:09 AM
Thank you very much for the re-Scoop Martin!
YDeveloper's comment, September 16, 2013 5:27 AM
Etsy is really a powerful tools. The reaction is reasonable.
YDeveloper's comment, September 16, 2013 5:29 AM