It looks like the embarrassment which Microsoft faces in cornering search market from Google is spreading its wings to Google’s own effort of gobbling up a larger slice of the social networking pie.
Orkut, Google’s social networking venture, has registered a 30% drop in traffic and 50% drop in page views per visit as noticed by our internal study.
The whois ranking for orkut is down to 58 from just 11 and page per view is down to 19.5 pages per visit from a healthy 38.5 pages few months ago, which is a severe 50% drop.
This comes up despite the introduction of applications on Orkut and several other added features which were supposed to put Orkut in line with other biggie social networks and just in time when Google was beta testing its monetizing plans for Orkut.
The thing to consider is that the severe drop in numbers is not reflected in other social networks which are showing sluggish growth.
Possible reasons for severe decline in uses:-
- Orkut dependency on emerging markets like Brazil and India is not unknown. What really comes as a blow is big bang entry of bigger social networks like Facebook, MySpace and several others into the core market of Orkut.
- Inability to make a dent into developed market, largely ruled by the likes of Facebook, MySpace & Hi5.
- Absence of any killer applications.
- The increasing dominance of micro blogs like twitter and pownce in emerging markets.
The above points could also hold true for many known social networks.
This eventually lead us to the bigger question -
Is social network hype over or their is more face to It?
Shāyon Adds : Although Raghav has taken all due measures to try and analyze reasons behind the trend, I think, what skipped out of his attention is that Orkut had changed the domain extension from orkut.com to orkut.co.in since quite some time. If you take a closer look at the Alexa rankings given below, for orkut.co.in, you shall notice that the ranks for the same had taken a huge leap from June, almost the time when the views plummeted in the case of orkut.com. Anyway, coming back to the original concept, do you think Orkut is losing its charm in the social networking market? Do you think that the nature of social networking is evolving, what with Twitter, Plurk and FriendFeed?