eHub Interviews Kayak

Posted by Emily Chang on Thursday, February 9th, 2006. Filed under: eHub Interviews

Visit Kayak, originally added to eHub on Dec 04, 05.

imageThanks to Bill O’Donnell, creator of Kayak for this email interview posted February 8, 2006.

eHub: What is your web application/service about?

Kayak: We search travel suppliers (airlines, hotels, car rentals) so consumers can search once, find the best price and book where they want.

eHub: Why did you start this project?

Kayak: We saw a need; people routinely check orbitz, travelocity and expedia to make sure they have the best price; or manually visit several airline web sites. We thought there should be a place where people can search once, and comparison shop.

eHub: How much time do you devote to its growth?  Do you have a day job?

Kayak: This is my full-time job, and the full focus of our company.

eHub: How large is your team and what are your backgrounds?

Kayak: Kayak.com has 8 programmers, plus QA, operations, sales and executive staff.

eHub: What is your design philosophy?

Kayak: Simplicity and speed, complete focus on the user experience. If people like the site, and it helps them get what they need, they will come back, and they will tell their friends.

eHub: What technologies are you currently using?

Kayak: Please see tech details at our site.

eHub: If your project is live, what are the most requested features from your users/community?

Kayak: Flexible dates searching, fare alerts, more airlines.

eHub: Does your user base reside in a primary geographic location or is it distributed?

Kayak: We have users from just about every corner of the earth.

eHub: Where do you see the project heading in the next 6 months?  The next 2 years?

Kayak: We hope to be the best travel search engine there has ever been.

eHub: What is the greatest challenge to your success?

Kayak: Marketing. Once users know about our site, most rave how much they love it.  Building the traffic takes time and money.

eHub: What is the one thing you need to get to the next phase of the project?

Kayak: Traffic.

eHub: Do you have a business model?  If so, what is it?

Kayak: Advertising.

eHub: If you’re able to disclose this information, how much traffic or usage do you see on an average day?

Kayak: One can get a reasonably accurate idea of our traffic from alexa or comscore media metrics.

eHub: What is the one thing you’re most proud of about the project?

Kayak: Post-search filtering UI: “instant” update of results.

eHub: How would you describe the shift that’s occurring with the web right now to future generations?

imageKayak: Around 2004-2005, the scriptable capabilities of web browsers reached a tipping point, which enabled an explosion of web sites that felt more qualitatively like applications, and less like electronic books.

eHub: What site(s) do you visit everyday other than your own?

Kayak: Bloglines; slashdot; google; gmail.

eHub: How many hours of sleep do you get a night?

Kayak: Not enough, but it’s got nothing to do with kayak.com, and everything to do with three little kids.

Thanks to Bill O’Donnell, creator of Kayak for this email interview posted February 8, 2006.

Visit Kayak
Originally added to eHub on Dec 04, 05