Speaking of Wikis

By November 25, 2006

Amazon has just added some Wiki functionality on every product page (there’s currently only about 35 Amazon products that have active Wikis.) But given that you can buy virtually anything through Amazon, the potential is there for it to cover a lot of products.

This may seem semi-redundant to the Product Description/Details and Customer Reviews already available on every product page. But it does provide yet another angle for people to find more information on a product. Since it’s a brand new feature and likely in the experimental state, it’s currently one of the last items on the page. But if more users begin to use this functionality I’d expect its prominence on the product pages might eventually rise.

I couldn’t help but think that it would be a potential avenue for shrewd manufacturers and marketers to have a little more say in how their product is described on the largest online retailer. To keep to the true spirit of Wikis (and to not raise any red flags with Amazon or to abuse the system) you can’t just blindly promote the product with marketing hype. Somebody can simply edit or delete what you wrote anyway. But you can provide factual information and try to frame a potential customer’s mindset and expectations.

I know whenever I’m personally searching for a review of a mainstream consumer product, Amazon is always among the first results (along with various pricing engines and Epinions) that comes up. So the potential for these Amazon Wikis to reach a large audience is clearly nothing to sneeze at.

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