Secret of successful Internet starups

What is the secret of successful Internet starups such as Youtube, Facebook, Flickr and Digg? How have they managed to attract millions of monthly unique visitors in less than two years time?

There are two orientations a company must follow: it must either be a true viral marketing candidate or a strong candidate for leveraging natural search traffic.


First, a viral Internet service is one where each new user must involve friends to derive personal value from the service.How about social services like YouTube or Flickr? The main purpose of these services was a way for friends to share video or pictures with each other. Users of YouTube or Flickr derive the main value from the service by showcasing videos or pictures to their friends.


In the second case, the company aims at having its website rank highly on Google and other search engines. The success of Digg can largely be attributed to its success in achieving high natural search rankings, rather than social communication feature sets. Digg’s initial user base of tech enthusiasts provided massive web linking in a very short period of time. By collecting lots of inbound links, Digg submitted stories began to rise in the natural search rankings. Other Internet success stories like Rotten Tomatoes,, and Zappos were built on the backs of natural search.

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