Cox Interactive Media, the Internet arm of Cox Enterprises
Inc., has formed partnerships with a real estate Web site and a major search-engine
company to augment the local content of its city sites on the Internet, as well as its
Cox@Home high-speed Internet service.
CIM has formed partnership affiliations with RealSelect
Inc., the Westlake, Calif.-based operator of Realtor.com,
the largest real estate Web site on the Internet, with more than 1 million homes in its
database; and with LookSmart, an Internet
With Realtor.com, users will be able to search homes
in their local areas, calculate the mortgage payments on particular homes and contact
brokers and agents.
LookSmart allows users to conduct local searches by keyword
or category. In addition, the search engine offers edited results, which eliminate most of
the irrelevant matches that are typical in many keyword searches on the Internet, CIM
Cox will make the Realtor.com site available in 20
of its city-site markets. The LookSmart search engine will be available in 65 markets, the
company said. Rollout schedules for both services have not been finalized.
Local content has been a key part of the Cox@Home service,
as well as of its city sites on the Internet, said Nancy Burford, a spokeswoman for CIM.
Burford added that the addition of RealSelect and LookSmart will enable the company to
provide more of what its users want.
"The [local] search engine, Realtor.com --
these are things that people think are important," Burford said.
She added that the two deals are part of CIM's strategy to
build traffic on both @Home and on its city sites on the Internet. With more localized
content, "advertisers have a better chance of reaching the people that they want to
According to research conducted by Media Metrix, CIM's city
sites have the highest percentage of pages consumed on the Internet (43 percent), with
more than 3 million unique visitors per month. This has translated into
advertising-revenue growth of 355 percent in the past year, as well as 455 percent growth
in page-view consumption between September 1997 and September 1998.