An interesting move from Pangora. They have decided to not only provide portals (and anyone willing to open a comparison engine) with a white-label solution, but also to enter the CSE market itself. Pangora is a subsidiary of Lycos. Some time ago Pangora (or actually Lycos) bought Mentasys, as Mentasys was the front-runner in mapping and matching of product content.
The fact that Pangora has decided to enter the CSE market is not really a surprise, as they had a business model that is not really sustainable in the long run. I will try to picture this below:
If you want to open a new comparison engine, you just go to Pangora. They basically can provide you with anything you need, so:
- deals with shops
- portal/comparison software (so, the website)
- mapping and matching of datafeeds to product data
- product data
The mayor drawback is that you will have to pay a 30% (or close to that number) commission to Pangora. This is probably ok if you’re just starting, but when you have gained in visitors and income you probably want your own solution. It’s just like doing match; when is it more profitable to do all this yourself? Besides, if your service is gaining in popularity, you want to stand out from the crowd, the Pangora solution is a me-too solution.
As things at Lycos and Pangora aren’t really flourishing this could be their last attempt. Moving from Munich to Karlsruhe also did not really help attaining the best people (this has been rumored, so it has not been checked by me).
Anyhow, their new site Decido is quite impressing. The usability is good and the services they provide are also quite well integrated. Now let’s see if they can also attract the visitors. They have some experience with that at Lycos, but for Pangora this must be new. As the SEO and SEM market in Germany are quite overheated (and weird in my humble opinion) I am curious if they can make it fly. A good site and content is one thing, having (happy and returning) visitors is the must crucial element for success!