Arabian Business Web Index - May 2003 Report

Microsoft-backed magazine Slate achieves a nominal profit and online advertising is growing again in the United Kingdom

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By  David Ingham Published  July 10, 2003

AME Info gets more personal|~||~||~|Click here to view the Arabian Business Web Index for May 2003" is trying to take the idea of pers-onalisation a step further with the introduction of ‘my AME Info.’ The service allows users to create a tailor-made ‘personal watch list’ of news that is only relevant to them.

“The personal watchlist concept is a result of a major re-engineering of the site, which brings a host of new functions, benefits and unparalleled user-friendliness to,” says Klaus Lovgreen, CEO of AME Info.

“We live in an age of information overload, and the AME Info personal watchlist is a chance for users to cut through irrelevant material and gain real-time access to the news that directly affects their business.”

To make use of the service, users simply have to click on the ‘request’ or ‘watch’ icons at the top of any news article that takes their fancy. Then, when further news about the organisation or subject category covered in that story is posted, the user will be immediately notified by e-mail. “This will be a great boon for investors, as well as those in need of market intelligence and competitive monitoring across the region,” reckons Lovgreen.

AME Info has stepped up its international profile, doubling its advertising on CNN in 2003. Saudi Arabia now generates 16% of its traffic, followed by the UAE, which generates 14%, and Egypt, which generates 12%. 81% of its users are male, 33% are in executive or senior management posts and almost two thirds are aged between 30–50.

In an effort to make it easier to use Arabic on the web, Maktoob has introduced a service called onwani (my address) that allows users to register domain names in Arabic. Users can do this through a simple process for only US $30 per year.

Another feature of onwani is a taskbar that can be downloaded from and allows users to type Arabic domain names in their browser. “Onwani is part of our commitment to boost the spread of Arabic domain names and allow companies to register their domain names in both Arabic and English,” says Samih Toukan, CEO of Maktoob.

The Jordan-based dot-com also announced a list of online merchants in the region that have begun to accept its cashU Card, which was developed to make online payment easier. The sites include Netpiper, Egyptweb, Jeeran and others.

CashU Cards work on the same kind of principle as prepaid mobile cards. Users enter the detail of each card when they purchase a product or service online and money is then allocated to the selling merchant by CashU. CashUs are available from Jordan Post and Jordan Telecom in Jordan, Jarir Bookshop in Saudi Arabia, Amazon in Kuwait and other outlets.

Staying in Jordan, Jordan Telecom has become the latest company to join Tejari, the business to business (B2B) marketplace that started in Dubai. The company will use the site to conduct auctions and tenders.

“We’ve tracked the progress made by companies that use electronic procurement processes – both in the telecommunications sector and in other comparable industries – and we’ve been greatly impressed by the potential advantages such innovations can deliver,” says Raslan Deiranieh, chief financial officer, Jordan Telecom.

Click here to view the Arabian Business Web Index for May 2003"

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||**|||~||~||~|Ranking in category by page views: Web sites are ranked according to the total number of page views reported in the sample period.

URL: Internet address of the Web site.

Site description: Web site owners have submitted their own descriptions. These have been edited by Arabian due to space constraints.

Site category: Categories have been formed by Arabian for the purpose of comparing Web sites in a like-with-like environment.

Total number of visits in period: The cummulative total of visits to a site in the specified period. A person visiting more than once in the sample period will be counted every time that person visits. Visitors to a site for a prolonged period, i.e. opens a Web site and leaves that site open on his machine all day, can count as several visitor sessions in that day. Web tracking software can effectively call a visitor session closed if it remains inactive for a predefined period.

Average duration of visitor session in period: The time taken between entering a site and leaving a site.

No. of new visitors in period: A count of visitors who have not at any time been logged by the Web tracking software.

No. of unique visitors per month: Unique visitors are counted using the visitor's IP address, domain name, or cookie.

No. of page impressions in period: A count of hits to pages defined as documents or forms by the Web tracking software. In most, but not all cases, a cick to a new page within a Web site will count as a single additional page impression. The supporting graphics on pages are not counted.

Sample period: The dates during which the log data was generated.

Verified by: Note of whether the visitor data has been checked by Arabian or whether the site owner has supplied data without independent verification.

Click here to view the Arabian Business Web Index for may 2003" ||**||

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