14 March 2012 by Kavitha Srinivasa
The Bangalore-based self-funded start up is the brainchild of Arun Kumar and like-minded techies. When they decided the time was right to take a leap and be their own boss, they chose to position themselves differently in the search engine space.
Most netizens' search begins on Google, Bing or Yahoo, which eventually leads to local search sites, which has geography and domain constraints. "All users are comfortable with Google. Our target was to present a similar interface to do a Yellow Pages search. In the existing local search websites, users have to enter the parts of the search query in multiple input windows, which doesn't display complete information," said Kumar, founder-CEO, Hudku India Pvt Limited. To view the phone number and additional information about a business, users should click on each of the search results.
Hudku tries to fill the gap and the development effort began in December 2010, before it was officially rolled out in 2011. To put things in perspective, LBS (Location Based Search) facility has been provided. "There's also provision for owner chosen keywords. The owner of a business listing can specify all the unique and specialized services offered including the brand name, product type, manufacturing processes, materials used and the users can search using those keywords as well," explained C.R. Balaji, Hudku Board Member and in charge of business development and overall management. All relevant results data like address, phone number and E-mail ID are displayed in a rectangular box, saving the trouble of clicking many more links to get additional information unlike some websites.
The toughest part has been to find an innovative solution to scale, handle huge number of concurrent users and speed to deliver results. This has been a technology solution developed through internal R&D efforts, whereby Hudku was developed as a precision search engine with a single window natural language interface. "Google has a mechanism of search engine optimization, through its index pages. We've submitted three lakh URLs to Google in January, because of which Google is crawling on us," Balaji offered by way of explanation. The early bird stands to gain, and the search engine has touched 1,000 hits per day over the last six weeks.
The thrust is to leverage Google, Bing and Yahoo by using SEO and other techniques and increase traffic to over 25,000 visits per day. With links and interfaces to Facebook, Tweeter and Linked in, many more hits are expected in the coming months. The techies have done its best stay ahead of the curve, as they have applied for a patent.
Hudku attempts to provide global information on a local basis in a single window interface saving the hassle of selecting the country, city and locality from multiple windows. It makes sense, since proverbially we live in a global village. This enables the business community to find certain products competitively priced in some parts of the globe. For instance, an Indian might find electronic goods cheaper in Japan and China, a European can find dry fruit, spices and herbal medicines competitively priced in India and certain other countries.
This is how it operates. Hudku includes premium listings include advertisements, top-level listings and Context Sensitive advertising. For example if someone wishes to post a classified text ad on home rentals, it would be free service. In case, the post includes a photograph or video, a fee would be charged and such paid listings appear at the top pages of search. Users who list their business have a facility to manage listings, wherein they can edit data depending on the latest developments and such updates are verified and automatically executed on the site.
Hudku works on tablets, PCs and laptops. As part of 2012 plans, the team is developing mobile applications on various popular mobile platforms. They intend to make available detailed search analytics to the users as well as the businesses. The entrepreneurs are working to create a rich user experience by providing support for images, videos and documents to be associated with each listing.
The parameters of proportions are well laid out through a lateral thinking. The search engine is servicing each of its search requests within 100 milliseconds. Quality data from global data collection agencies will soon be part of its portfolio. This year, the search engine will carry business data of non-English countries like France, Italy, Germany, Spain and Japan and make the data available first to Hudku consumers using English. Later the interface will be ported to use different local languages.
The team's immediate concern is to improve the ease of search with quality of search, and in the process, put that one Kannada word in everyone's mouth.
Posted By: Kavitha Srinivasa @ 14 March 2012 04:37 PM General
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