Showing posts tagged Questions and Answers

Is it almost December already?

By robbiewf // November 30th, 2011

Believe it or not, 2011 is quickly coming to a close and 2012 is just around the corner. Which means it’s time for our annual look back on the rumors, gossip and news that captured Ask users’ attention this year. Since people come to Ask with a lot of questions, instead of just search terms, we compiled the top trending questions of the year. Ready?

In a surprise upset, curvaceous queen of the reality TV overshare, Kim Kardashian edged out Justin Bieber to take home the honors for the top trending question in 2011. Guess what they asked? Well, keep reading.

Or, are you more of a viewer than a reader? Then check out our cool little video



Of course Bieber Fever dominated all year, but Kim K. knocked J. Biebs out of the top spot with the her fairytale wedding, followed shortly by a dramatic and (unexpected?) split.

Our #1? Kim Kardashian: Was Kim Kardashian’s wedding fake?

Runner up? Justin Bieber: Is Justin Bieber going to be a dad?


Sadly, nature showed her destructive side again this year and two major disasters took the top two spots for questions most asked about news items.

1.     Earthquake in Japan: How big was the earthquake in Japan?

2.     Hurricane Irene: What caused Hurricane Irene?

Another force of nature, Amy Winehouse, also made the top ten due to her untimely death. The news of Winehouse’s death was heard around the world — transcending the celebrity pages to become one of the biggest news items of the year.


Is it election year? Who can tell these days, but the Democrats vs. Republicans showdown is well underway and a number of notables kept popping up all year.

1.     Barack Obama: Will Obama get re-elected?

2.     Mitt Romney: What is Mitt Romney’s religion?

But the questions we get don’t just identify the most popular figures and events of 2011. For the first time, we took the top questions to predict the headlines of the year to come. Nice.

Based on thousands of questions, we predict 2012… (imagine a drum roll):  

1.     George Clooney wins his second AND third Academy Award

2.     Dr. Oz surpasses Dr. Phil in ratings in a post-Oprah world

3.     Green Bay Packers win Super Bowl second year in a row

4.     McDonald’s adds the McRib to their permanent menu

5.     New York reclaims its spot as top the US travel destination from 2011 leader Orlando

6.     Breakout star of 2011, Nicki Minaj, leapfrogs pop icon Katy Perry in album sales

7.     Pippa jumps onto the list of top ten baby names of the year

8.     Facebook goes public with world’s largest IPO

9.     Tiger Woods retires from golf

And, finally…Will the world end in 2012?

10.   Yeah, pretty sure IT WON’T


Alright. Now we can all go back to braving the cold weather, the shopping madness, the food, the peppermint mochas, the family and the presents. I’ll be right there with you.

Happy Holidays!


Robbie Waeschenfelder, Director, Marketing & Trendy Trend Expert 

Full Story // Leave comment Q&A Community is off to a great start!

By nedaf // October 4th, 2011

I wanted to share with you some exciting updates about our Q&A Community. As you may know, Q&A Community is now open to all visitors; this means all visitors can receive answers from both the web and from real people. After opening the live user community to everyone in September, the visitors of have responded amazingly. The user registration from the Site has doubled compared to the Beta phase; while the registrations from iOS App have been stable and steady.

Our users are not only joining the Community but are also very engaged as apparent by their many activities (asking questions, answering questions and commenting on questions). Not only do these new Site users browse various Q&A pages, but they are also very engaged in content activities such as asking a question, providing answers, commenting on Answers, as well as voting. In fact, in addition to the existing users, about 75-80% of these new users contribute to various content activities on our Q&A pages.  The visits to Q&A pages are also 2.5 times higher in September.

These are a few highlights of the full release of Q&A Community which marks the start of a very exciting road for us. We will share more updates with you as the Q&A Community progresses over time.


Neda Farzinnia, Director of Analytics

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Questions & Answers = More User Activity

By nedaf // July 13th, 2011

We’ve been looking at user behavior in our Q&A community (which is still in beta) and found that people who ask and answer questions tend to boast higher frequency and retention rates - exciting stuff as we look to roll out this feature across all our traffic later this summer.  Visitors to our Q&A community are more engaged than our non-community users and have a higher visit rate to pages. In fact, people who ask and answer questions on produce 2x as many visits per visitor as our site users who do not interact with the live Q&A community.


Users who participate in asking and answering questions in our Q&A community are able to ask questions, browse questions from other users, answer other questions and make comments. Here are some other data points we have gathered from our community users:

- Users in the Q&A Community have a higher retention than our average site users.

- Percentage of Q&A community users who come back to the site is 2x as large as non-community users.  

- Q&A community users are active across all pages including asking questions, answering questions, and making general search queries.

We will continue to learn about the user community as it grows, and we’ll keep you posted on all the exciting news.

Neda Farzinnia, Director of Analytics

Full Story // Leave comment We love Our Long-Winded Users!

By nedaf // July 1st, 2011

I recently read a post describing internet research by Chitika Insights, which provided some insights on the comparison of query lengths across various search engines. It is certainly interesting data; however, our placement as the site with the longest search queries is not very surprising since about 40% of queries on are in the form of a question. After all, we are and our users come to our site with the intentions of not only searching the web but also asking questions and getting answers to their questions. Therefore, these question queries translate into a much longer query length than your standard keyword search. One of our missions at is to provide services that focus on people who are asking real questions as opposed to using just keywords. Here at Ask, we strive to not only answer questions from content already published on the web, but also provide answers from real users.

Neda Farzinnia, Director of Analytics

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Welcome to Summer!

By eekidder // June 21st, 2011

Today is the Summer Solstice, which marks the official start of summer! And it certainly feels like it, the temperatures are supposed to reach 89 degrees here in Oakland today, which is pretty warm for these parts. The solstice has been an important day for people around the world for centuries, because there is more sun today than any other day of the year. In fact the famous monument Stonehenge was thought to have been constructed to mark days just like this.

So if you’re wondering what exactly the summer solstice is, when does summer officially end, or just want to know what the weather will be like in your neighborhood today, just ask!

Emily Kidder, Knowledge Engineer/Smart Answers Team

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Breakout the SPF: Users get Ready for Summer

By spolonsky // June 10th, 2011

With summer just around the corner, users are asking and answering all sorts of questions about how to prepare for the season. Some of the most popular questions focused on sun damage, tanning and how to make sure everything from sunglasses to nails are summer-ready.  Check out the tips below!
What is the fastest way to get rid of sunburn?
54% of users say you should try applying Aloe Vera gel multiple times a day.

What are some high-quality brands of sunglasses? users recommend Oakley’s, Spy and Ray Bans.

What are the best nail polish colors for summer? users suggest sticking to lighter colors such as light pinks, nudes, peaches and light blues.

Where are the best places to go on summer vacation? users recommend going to Florida, Hawaii, California or the Bahamas for your summer vacation this year.

What are some fun and affordable things to do this summer?
45% of users say camping is a great activity to do during the summer. Other ideas are hiking and swimming at a local pool or beach.

What is the best beach sport to do with friends?
43% of users say frisbee is a fun and all inclusive sport to play with friends. Other beach sports suggested were bocci ball and football.


Sheree Polonsky, Public Relations

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