How the Remnants of About.com Are Stealthily Taking Over the Internet
On Bagel Thursdays, Dotdash convenes its weekly growth meeting in a conference room overlooking Times Square. At 9 o’clock on a bright September morning, a dozen or so editors, an analytics guru, and the company’s top two operating executives discuss plans to enhance Dotdash’s vast content archive of more than 250,000 “super articles,” company parlance for stories that synthesize prose, videos, images, and illustrations about a panoply of American obsessions, including investment strategy, home decorating, personal finance, and medical information. The meeting is a brisk rundown of challenges and milestones.
Maybe you’ve never even heard of Dotdash, but its service content reaches about 90 million Americans a month.
At a time when digital media companies are faltering, Dotdash is growing: in audience, head count, and revenue. The company oversees a collection of nearly a dozen lifestyle-focused websites that cover such evergreen topics as tech (Lifewire), health (Verywell), travel (TripSavvy), and personal finance and investing (The Balance, Investopedia). Collectively, Dotdash’s sites have increased traffic by 44% year over year in Q3 2019. Driven by advertising and e-commerce, the company’s annual revenue grew by 44% in 2018 and 34% as reported in Q3 2019 earnings. While other media companies are shuttering sites and titles, Dotdash has been expanding, scooping up Byrdie (beauty) and MyDomaine (home) from Clique Media in January before taking the legendary Brides brand off Condé Nast’s hands in May and buying the cocktail-focused Liquor.com in October from founder Kit Codik.