Yahoo's CEO, Marissa Mayer, announced on Tumblr that they have renewed and extended their deal with Microsoft on their search front.In short, Bing will still power much of Yahoo Search but Yahoo does gain more control. Instead of Bing powering almost all of the ads on Yahoo Search desktop, now Yahoo only has to show Bing Ads on 51% of those searches.Danny Sullivan has an excellent FAQ on the deal. I am not surprised to see the deal renewed, was hoping to hear a hail-marry where Yahoo goes at search alone again, but that was highly doubtful.Marissa said:Today, I’m excited to announce a renewed search alliance with Microsoft. The agreement opens up significant opportunities in our partnership, enabling both partners to improve the search experience, create value for advertisers, and establish ongoing stability for partners.We firmly believe that search is still in its infancy – and this partnership marks the next chapter in our exploration of how to make search truly great. … [Read more...] about Yahoo Renews Microsoft Deal Reducing Yahoo’s Dependence On Bing Ads
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This afternoon, Kevin Johnson, president of Microsoft Platforms & Services Division, issued an email to Microsoft employees (that was released via its PR firm). The letter has a tone of confidence that assumes a deal with Yahoo will ultimately take place. It reiterates what Microsoft believes to be the benefits of that deal and looks beyond regulatory approval to integration issues. It downplays Yahoo resistance, potential culture conflicts between the companies, and potential layoffs, and focuses on an upbeat message about the future. Below is the full text of the email: I want to provide all employees in the Platforms & Services Division with an update on our February 1 proposal to combine with Yahoo!, and answer a few common questions that have been asked. As we’ve discussed, the online advertising industry is growing rapidly and is expected to be an $80B industry by 2010. We believe our proposal is a compelling one and that the combination of Yahoo! and Microsoft … [Read more...] about “Once Yahoo And Microsoft Agree On A Transaction”
If Microsoft’s walkaway from the Yahoo deal is indeed a ploy to save $5 billion, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer may have proven himself pennywise and pound foolish. He was prepared to spend billions to finally make Microsoft a serious rival to Google. For a bit more, he may have destroyed Microsoft’s chance to get there. Despite what I’m about to write, I like Microsoft. I’ve got many friends who work there (and at Google & Yahoo), and as a company, I actually want Microsoft (along with Yahoo) to provide a strong counter-balance to Google. Five Years, Nothing For Microsoft To Show Microsoft’s basic problem is this. After five years of going after Google in search, Microsoft has failed to make a dent in the big G. Millions — billions, I suppose — have been spent on the project. Huge technological effort has gone into the challenge. What’s to show for it? Google’s at all-time highs in the US and Microsoft has lost share. Three out of … [Read more...] about Abandoning The Yahoo Deal: Microsoft’s $5 Billion Mistake?
Today, Google, Yahoo!, and Microsoft have come together to post details of how each of them support robots.txt and the robots meta tag. While their posts use terms like “collaboration” and “working together,” they haven’t joined together to implement a new standard (as they did with sitemaps.org). Rather, they are simply making a joint stand in messaging that robots.txt is the standard way of blocking search engine robot access to web sites. They have identified a core set of robots.txt and robots meta tag directives that all three engines support: Google and Yahoo! already supported and documented each of the core directives, and Microsoft supported most of them before this announcement. In their posts, they also list the directives they support that may not be supported by the other engines. For robots.txt, they all support: Disallow Allow Use of wildcards Sitemap location For robots meta tags, they all support: noindex nofollow noarchive nosnippet … [Read more...] about Yahoo!, Google, Microsoft Clarify Robots.txt Support
Between December 2005 and April 2006, researchers from Microsoft collected information about the searching and browsing activies of hundreds of thousands of Windows Live Toolbar users, with permission, to learn about the sometimes unranked and unindexed final destination pages that searchers ended up at in response to queries entered at Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft’s Live.com. So much of what search engines try to do when presenting relevant results to searchers is based upon assumptions found in algorithms like PageRank. Can tracking actual user search and browsing behaviors better help a search engine understand which pages may best answer queries posed by searchers at search engines? Microsoft on Final Destination Pages Last year, a trio of Microsoft researchers were awarded the Best Paper Award at SIGIR’07 for a paper titled Studying the Use of Popular Destinations to Enhance Web Search Interaction (pdf) that looked at the searching and browsing behavior of a large … [Read more...] about Microsoft Tracking Search and Browsing Behavior to Find Authoritative Pages