Watch out Angie’s List (NASDAQ:ANGI), here comes another Barry Diller special. On October 1, the company formerly known as ServiceMagic — an IAC/InterActiveCorp (NASDAQ:IACI) property — relaunched its home improvement website as HomeAdvisor.
The transition of the 13 year-old Internet company took a year to complete and has the potential to disrupt the company’s world-class search-engine rankings, which are responsible for the majority of its traffic and $205 million annual revenue. However, with a reputation as “The Yelp (NYSE:YELP) for Contractors”, the branding change to a much stronger set of keywords should help home improvement hobbyists and professionals more easily find the website.
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HomeAdvisor also introduced a new spokesperson, TV home improvement expert Amy Matthews, and Project Cost Guides as part of the effort to take on Angie’s List and build the dominant online brand in home improvement. Angie’s List has been criticized for racking up losses to compete with the more financially sound ServiceMagic.
HomeAdvisor connects homeowners with prescreened and customer-rated local service professionals, provides a directory over 1.7 million verified reviews, and mans a live 24/7 support line.
According to the company’s press release, the name HomeAdvisor fits better with the company’s plans to narrow its focus on home maintenance than ServiceMagic. The name change, the company’s Chief Executive Officer Chris Terrill told the Post, came out of concerns over the brand’s future. Research conducted by the company found that while “service was a nice name, magic didn’t conjure up the right things for the home space,” Terrill said.
TripAdvisor (NASDAQ:TRIP), the travel website and interactive forum, made a similar transition. The company was originally founded in 2000, spun off from IAC under the Expedia (NASDAQ:EXPE) name in 2005, and became a public company in April 2011.