(pictured above: Spiceworks CEO Jay Hallberg on stage at SpiceWorld in Austin, Texas, Oct. 10.)
SPICEWORKS SPICEWORLD — Tuesday at SpiceWorld 2017, Spiceworks executives took a look back at the company’s first 10 years and laid out for attendees the next steps for the online IT community and management tools provider.
“SpiceWorld is really about you,” Spiceworks CEO Jay Hallberg told the crowd of about 2,000. “About a half-million people come to Spiceworks every day to get their jobs done.”
More stats: Spiceworks has 7 million unique visitors per month, and its content shows up in 2 billion search results annually. Last year, with its free tools, there were 13 million devices inventoried and 70 million help-desk tickets managed. Its community overlaps channel verticals, with enterprises as well as educational institutions such as the University of Texas and Brigham Young University, and nonprofits including the Girl Scouts. Event sponsors are a who’s who of channel stalwarts, from AT&T and Cisco to CompTIA, Sophos and Lenovo.
Tech vendors are also looking to get access to the Spiceworks community — in the last year, 500 tech brands created 10,000 resources.
About 15 percent of the Spiceworks community is IT service providers, and the company maintains a partner directory accessible to the community. The company’s revenue comes solely from ads and marketing services. Your customers are likely using the site to research purchases. Sanjay Castelino, VP of marketing, says Spiceworks sees 1.2 million visits to its product-review pages annually. To make that research more efficient, the company announced a new cataloging feature and a cleaner user interface for product pages as well as a comparison feature for popular categories.
The site will also use a new decision engine to surface the most relevant native content.
Castelino says the company is working on a new set of paid services, including peer referrals, premium support, product trials and project assist. The first service, still in development, will center around using crowdsourced data to help members find products.
He says the service is meant to offer the benefits of Gartner or other premium analyst services at a low cost.
“We want to bring this to folks for hundreds of dollars a year, not thousands,” he said. The company also previewed an updated remote-access tool, with no VPN needed, that supports an unlimited number of sessions and workstations. The new Remote Support offering is powered by Zoho Assist and is available now.
Interestingly, CEO Hallberg profiled a small IT service provider from Norway to illustrate the localization initiative meant to connect community members and help service providers expand their practices and connect with local vendors.
The warmest welcome from the keynote crowd was for the new Spiceworks Learn crowdsourced educational environment that provides how-tos, articles, webinars and videos across a variety of tech topics. It includes elements of gamification, such as the ability to earn badges, and will initially focus on …