If you like sites Quora & Mouthshut, try Qstacks.com for Q&A on technology
Searching for something, looking for answers or simply curious, internet has managed to make all things easy. Another interesting format that has gained much traction online is the Q&A format, be it Quora, Mouthshut or other such websites, the user base for these focused, crowd-sourced platforms have been on a rise. One more site trying to make a play in the technology space is a Q & A website – Qstacks.com. Launched in December 2012, it is a platform where people could ask questions about anything related to technology, gadgets, web (web designing, WordPress, websites etc) and social media. It is completely free to ask or answer questions, to index or tag. The site has been built with the support of the open source community.
When asked about the differentiation of Qstacks, Musthafa Ullal, the founder says: “We are not a forum, or a community edited website like Wikipedia, neither are we a blog nor a Digg/Reddit. Instead we are a small unique community, that wants to bring the most accurate information related to any questions being asked here. We bring the right tutorials for the right problems and attempt to get perfect answers to the right questions.”
Musthafa started Qstacks in September 2010, after giving up his full time job at HSBC InvestSmart. He dabbled in quite a few things before Qstacks. “I initiated one technology blog after another until I found that it was hard to attract traffic from search engines, especially from Google. I was competing against already settled technology blogs run by companies from US & the UK,” he says. Musthafa realized user generated content was their USP and that was the trick to attract traffic flow. He thus began work on a Q & A website, and launched Qstacks in December 2012.
“Our business model is very simple – help others and help yourselves. There is massive competition in the technology space, but I feel we stand different as we do not rely on users to provide answers to the posted questions and hence we have lesser number of unanswered questions on our website,” explains Musthafa. Though they rely on user generated content, at Qstacks they strive to have “quality” user generated content. Each question posted on the site is moderated by a team of local experts who have been trained especially for the work. These experts and active users are forced to provide answers within 48 hours for new and simple questions and incase of advanced and complicated questions more than 48 hours time is allowed. Questions which have spelling mistakes, poor English etc. are at times rejected.
“We have introduced a reward point system named as “monthly users contest” where users and experts participate actively. Users benefit by collecting points by asking questions, posting answers, votes, best answers etc. and experts are rewarded if their answer is rated as the best answer by the user,” this initiative says Musthafa as given them good traction. During the initial months, they attracted views on search engines by participating in different forums themselves. They have researched the highly searched long-tail keywords and created questions around it which has worked well for them, says Musthafa. He claims their counts are real and in Google Analytics, they have reached 4 lakh plus unique visitors and currently get 1.3 lakh monthly unique visitors. “Today we have 660-plus users, 2000 plus questions and answers in our kitty,” says Musthafa.
Technical questions and answers appear on the top in the index and increases the possibility of getting more visitors to the website. The site mostly relies on advertisements to generate revenues. “Since inception, we have relied on Google Adsense, on content websites and ClickBank, Amazon as affiliates.” QStacks gets around 50% of its traffic from sites like ebay India and other affiliate marketing and niche websites. Besides guest blogging and manual link building, they have not done many marketing activities and Musthafa claims they have already earned more than 300% of profits from investments done on Qstacks.com.
Besides his passion for technology, Musthafa is also involved in community and social service and wants to help people who are poor, but intelligent enough to work on internet and make money. He has employed many educated Muslim girls in his locality, who today work as answer experts in his team. He says his aim is to grow QStacks.com as a community and to reach to 10,000 quality users by the end of this year.