I don't like to visit sites with banner ads flashing in my face
(PRWEB) June 30, 2005
Adam Alter didn't set out to create the industry leader. An avid computer gamer himself, he started a site three years ago that sold notebook computers so powerful that they could be desktop replacements for gamers and business people and anyone else who just wanted a neater desk. When he realized that there was no good place where notebook shoppers could go for unbiased advice, http://www.NotebookForums.com was born. While it began with a main focus on Sager laptops - the brand Alter still sells - the site grew quickly, and sections were added for most notebook brands. "These Forums are all about our members," Alter says. "They built them, they moderate them, and they are the ones who give the advice. With more than forty thousand members, our bank of information is pretty amazing."
From inception, it was important to Alter that his site be unbiased. "Sager is the first Forum on the list, but that is the only help we give it. What people learn on our Forums is there are some very powerful notebooks available now that are much cheaper and often better than the big brand names like IBM and Dell. We open their eyes." And he does it at his own expense. "I don't like to visit sites with banner ads flashing in my face," he says. "That's why we don't take advertising. Our members like the free, no-pressure atmosphere."
The rise of Austin-based http://www.NotebookForums.com is part of a larger trend in the computer industry as the Internet comes of age. Notebooks outsold desktop computers for the first time in May, with notebooks making up 53.3% of personal computer sales, up from 45.9% a year ago, according to industry experts Current Analysis of San Diego. With more and more restaurants, neighborhoods, and even whole cities providing wireless Internet access, people are learning that they can take their computers almost anywhere.
There is another story here too, Alter says. "It's about the way people shop today. It used to be that people had to use advertising to find the best products, but with the rise of Internet forums they have a much broader range of choices. Some of the most cutting-edge brands, like Sager, hardly advertise at all, but they rely on forums like ours to get the word out. Our members are sharp and nothing gets past them. If a product doesn't perform they say so, and if something is good they say that too, and they give each other advice about details of each computer so every shopper gets exactly what he needs. It puts little companies in a league with the big guys, and it gives every shopper the chance to shop like an expert."
Alter has big ambitions for http://www.NotebookForums.com. "The notebook forums are really only a small part of the whole package we are putting together to build the ultimate source for notebook information and discussion. I want the Forums to be a place so well done that the volunteer moderators wouldn't think twice about declaring their participation and moderation experience on their resume."
Strafe Right LLC
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