Gowalla encourages users to explore and connect through many fun features and a social networking environment. The site helps friends and family keep in touch. Users can share information about where they plan to go while staying in touch with friends on Facebook and Twitter. Users can also upload images from the places they are currently visiting along with information, tips or other useful information that friends want to know. The user can also provide recommendations for others. By being active on Gowalla, users can earn rewards that include savings at local venues, retailers and eateries. Gowalla users are rewarded by being social, exploring their local area and sharing information on what they find.Show more screenshots »
Gowalla was founded in August of 2007 by Josh Williams and Scott Raymond. Based out of Austin, Texas, the Gowalla team also includes UI designer Keegan Jones, studio manager Sandi Weldon, illustrator Brian Brasher, Senior Mobile Developer Phillip Bowden, Senior Developer John Critz, and investor Jason Calacanis. The site has received financial backing to encourage further development. The entire team now consists of over 20 individuals as Gowalla continues to expand and improve its web and mobile based offerings to users online. In 2011, Gowalla was acquired by Facebook. As a result Gowalla was shut down in March 2012.
Gowalla offers many similar services to other social network based websites. Of course that doesn’t mean the site isn’t worth a look. Users can share information about where they are going and where they have been as well as make personal recommendations. Many website owners have discovered that the people we know are the best resources for tips and suggestions when going out and exploring the world. Sites like Gowalla harness this knowledge and present it to a large community so everyone can benefit and discover new attractions and businesses they may have otherwise missed.
The lighthearted Gowalla website invites visitors with smiling images of people, colorful awards, and drawings of places. The site is colorful but avoids becoming too busy or overwhelming. A new visitor can quickly learn how to navigate the site and access each available feature. Showcased destinations and other features are presented at the bottom of the page, out of the way of the basic navigation tools.
A new user can register for Gowalla by clicking the large “Sign Up Now” button found near the bottom along the left hand side of the homepage. This takes the user to the modest registration form which asks for a username, password, first and last name, and email address. After entering the information and clicking the next orange “Sign Up” button, the user is asked to confirm their email and invited to begin adding friends. This is done by manually entering email addresses and connecting through Facebook or Twitter. The user is also able to skip each step if they do not wish to add friends at this point.
Gowalla benefits by having more members providing more information and inviting even more users to check out the site. That being said, the creators have kept it very welcoming for everyone with a free account for all. Anyone can register and begin using Gowalla for free. There are no costs associated with the site other than any money spent on going out and exploring the town.
Gowalla is ideal for users who love to explore or those who want to get out there and see what is available in their community. The site is very easy to use and makes connecting and sharing information about local businesses fun.