Monday, August 05, 2013

Malaysia Price Checker shut down on 01 September 2013

Malaysia Price Checker started not long after I get married, where I am more involved in groceries shopping and was curious about the reasonable (or bargain) price of my favorite coffee, peanut butter and cheese. I have a need, I build a solution.

After one year, I learned a few things (no guaranteed of conclusiveness):

  • Recording of grocery price if of no fun, at least food review still have some "bragging" rights; thus the source of data is not sustainable in an organic way.
  • Mostly "aunties" do the shopping, and "aunties" seldom use apps or website
  • After repetitive shopping of the same grocery list, I kinda memorized the reasonable price.
  • I am too lazy to go to another place to buy groceries just because they are cheap; I prefer some place near and familiar
  • I never adopted the habit to check for grocery prices online, though I would like to check for the online prices for hardware and mobile devices.
  • Each product items attracts about 4.7 visitors per month, which is faily low and cost of product acquisition is fairly high and fairly limited.

Numbers about Malaysia Price Checker

Launch Date: 10 Aug, 2011
Unique Visitors: 16.8K / July 2013, Peak @ 21.2K / March 2013
Pageviews: 28.6K / July 2013, Peak @  39.3K / March 2013
Number of Products listed:  4,444
Number of Price posted: 5,665

Malaysia Price Checker Visits (Jan 2012 - Jul 2012)
We stop increasing the number of products and prices entry since October 2012, yet the web traffic is still sustainable with some growth (Interesting, meaning the data doesn't aged quickly)

Why did I quit?

  • No longer interested: I no longer find there is a need to check grocery price online (I can't develop a product which I am no longer interested to use).
  • Economically not feasible: my "business model" is publishing, where I published useful information online and make money from advertisement; the increase of visitor in tandem with the number of product entered is fairly low (21.2K visitors / 4.4K products = each product attract 4.7 visitors per month). I faced problem increasing the number of products and getting people interested to contribute information. Advertisement Income depends on Visitors/Pageviews, Visitors/Pageviews depends on Product/Price, Product/Price depends on user contributions or solicited data source. The number doesn't looks good.
  • Distractions: Nowadays I am more interested in restaurant and travel discovery.

Is there still hope?

Maybe. I quit because I found something more interesting to work on, and I didn't quite push the idea far enough (I lost interest too fast, and I got distracted with "better" ideas).

I didn't pursue the idea of including prices of electronics gadgets, books, etc. I didn't optimize the site further for growth hacking. As shown in the Visit Graph above, the visitors still sustained after 9 months since the last data entry (the information didn't aged quickly).


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Roman Davis said...

Malaysia is a populated Muslim country where all things are bought and sold at a suitable price. It is very sorrowful news that the price checker is shutting down in Malaysia. Now the price may be increased there.
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