How are top 10 lists created?

I believe the best information can be found through experts.

Why? Because today the world wide web has evolved into a jungle for consumers, making it increasingly difficult and time consuming to find the best and most reliable available products and services online. When searching for products or services out of your daily comfort zone (e.g. eye laser surgery), consumers have to rely on the algorithm of search engines. Advice or reference from expert editors, bloggers and peers would be highly appreciated in the decision making process. Next to this, SEM (Search Engine Marketing) has become a big game with high investments to obtain a first page position in Search Engine Result Pages (SERP). Today, not the quality of content and services, but SEO optimization techniques make the difference in ranking.

That is why we believe that expert ratings are beter than algorithme ratings. We tested our assumption with the key word ‘buy laptop’ and another example ‘repair dishwasher’. We only changed the order of the links not the content and we found out that 70% of the consumer preferred the expert rating above Google.

Algorithme rating versus Expert Rating

Last wednesday I was at Mini Seedcamp Amsterdam where the top 10 startups were pitching. Since I am a big fan of the ‘lean methodology’  I thought: “let’s test my assumption that these 10 startups can be best rated via an expert”. Below you will find the result of this expert rating.

My top 10 startups - Mini Seedcamp Amsterdam

Now the first thing you asked “who is the expert performing the rating”? Well that is me. After you have validated whether or not I have a certain amount of knowledge about startups you would like to know: “What factors determined the ranking of these startups? Why is the startup Reccy number one?”

In my opinion it all depends on the ‘expert’ making the ranking and from which perspective you view the startups. Different perspectives change the ranking of startups. You can compare it with a Rubik’s cube. Different colours on different sides of the cube can be shown, it only depends on your preference.

Don’t get me wrong, the rating of these startups should ‘ultimately’ be tailored to the needs of the reader. But since I have no idea whether you are an investor reading this blog post, an accelerator program or just a random guy interested in startups it is better to stick to just one variable: the expert. So I am only interested in testing the assumption that an expert (me) has created the right ranking of the startups during their pitch at Mini Seedcamp Amsterdam.

I used the following tools to curate the ranking of the startups:

  • I listened to their pitches. Did the startup define the WHY, HOW and WHAT. Is there a business model and if so, is it scalable?
  • What are the rankings of the founders on Klout, and their startups on Angel List?
  • Finally, I was interested in the amount of tweets containing the # “startupname” on the day the event took place. This should give me a gross estimate about the popularity of the startup.

Based on the above input I have created a ranking of the startups. Since time is valuable I’m just going to present my top 10:

My top 10 startups - Mini Seedcamp Amsterdam

I hope you like it and if not, any feedback is welcome!


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  1. Human (curation) vs. Machine (Algorithm) Ranking | ZEEF - April 18, 2014

    […] have done an experiment a while ago, which we talked about before: we changed the order of Google search results for a query to something we thought was more […]

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