Monday, March 31, 2008

Listings for Germany

We have been trying out adding listings for Germany (especially Berlin) to the site. Germany is of course well-covered by English and German-language sites, but the competition in other languages like Czech (Berlín) or Italian (Berlino) looks pretty slim.

I'll be watching my Google search traffic to see when we start to come up for searches like "Kavárny Berlín". Based on our experience with Copenhagen searches in Czech, it shouldn't take long.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Allegro restaurant at the Four Seasons Hotel awarded Michelin star

According to, the Allegro Restaurant at the Four Seasons Hotel in Prague has been awarded a Michelin star. This is the first restaurant in the Czech Republic to be accorded this honor.

I haven't eaten there, so I can't comment on the food, but I think that many people in Prague expected Gordon Ramsay's new Maze restaurant in the Prague Old Town Hilton would be the first restaurant in CR to get a prestigious Michelin star. Now he'll need to get one just to tie for first.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Nelso in Polish launched

We've just launched a version of the Nelso site in Polish at This brings the total languages for Nelso to six (English, Czech, German, Danish, Italian, and Polish).

Next up - French and Spanish. We're also hoping to roll out a version in Japanese by the end of next month (April 2008).

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Nelso in Italian

We just now launched a beta version of Nelso "in Italiano" (we say beta because for the moment it's mostly limited to food and drink listings). However, most of the localization work has been done to allow Italian speakers to search the site using Italian, including translating Czech place names. For example, the site has no problem handling a search for "cucina italiana ponte carlo" (that is, "Italian food near Charles Bridge").

Googlebot, dinner is served. Come and get it while it's hot. sending us twice the traffic of

Because of the nature of our site, receives a lot of its traffic from search engines. Most users try a search engine first when looking for local information, so a user goes to Google to search for "hospoda mala strana" and then follows the link to our listings for Hospody (pubs) in Malá Strana. Simple enough.

For the English-language Prague search site, Google sends us almost 100% of our search engine traffic. While it's a little surprising that Yahoo sends us almost no traffic from the U.S., Google is definitely the largest search engine for English speakers and should be sending us the most traffic.

In the Czech Republic, the situation is a not quite what we expected. Out of the three Czech-language search engines that send us traffic, the largest in terms of total market share (Seznam) actually sends the least amount of traffic to our site. In the Czech Republic, search engine referrals come largely from (75.6%), then (15.5%), and then (8.9%). While I've always been convinced that is more popular in the Czech Republic than the press has been reporting, I was surprised to see dead last in referring users to, and a distant third at that.

There are a number of possible explanations for this: Seznam hasn't indexed as thoroughly as Google or Centrum, Seznam's ranking algorithm doesn't favor the way is structured, or perhaps Google is stronger in Prague and therefore appears bigger from the perspective of a Prague-centric site. I'd be interested to see stats from other Czech sites to compare with ours.