A website called HotWired sells the first-ever clickable online ad to AT&T: a banner ad priced at $30 000 for 3 months. This type of ad sale is called “fixed-placement.”
Note: Yahoo would later pioneer fixed-placement ads as the gold-standard for ad-unit sales.
Despite backlash over search result quality, a search engine called GoTo.com starts normalizing ads being shown in the top links of search results.
Note: "'It goes against the concept of search,' said one prominent Wall Street analyst" at the time.
Google starts using auctions (Google Adwords) to sell advertising space on the side of their search results page, and uses a “quality score” to preserve search quality.
Note: As more companies enter ad auctions over time, ad prices will rise and more and more money will be made per advertising slot sold.
Amazon starts the endeavor of its auction-based ad business (Amazon A9, which became Amazon Clickriver) which earned over $31 billion dollars in 2021.
Note: That year, 13.1% of the U.S. population had income below poverty levels (U.S. Census Bureau).
U.S. online advertising spend overtakes cable T.V. advertising for the first time. ($36.6 vs. $32.5 billion)
Note: That year, 15.9% of the U.S. population had income below poverty levels (U.S. Census Bureau).
The start of ChaChing
The ChaChing team realized that the best way to alter someone’s behavior (the goal of advertising) is to pay them... and if you want to pay shoppers for buying one thing over another, the money can't sit in the pocket of a middleman: it has to reach the shopper making the final purchasing decision.
The original brainstorming of ChaChing on the day it was conceived... scrawled on the windows of an apartment
Research & Development
ChaChing's Beta was launched for a small number of users. Key partnerships were formed. We had amazing impact on the financial lives of both shoppers and stores starting to deal with inflation. The true superpower of ChaChing lies in its economic model of giving back. Thank you to everyone that participated.
ChaChing launches its first public website, as well as the ChaChing app for shoppers to use, and an ad portal so advertisers upload their products for everyone to discover.