It’s no secret that Google is the undisputed king of search, but what about Yahoo? Rather than embarrass itself the way Microsoft has with its “Scroogled” campaign, Yahoo has decided to focus on its strengths as a content producer. We’re already seeing this on Yahoo’s international page, and Yahoo PH will be following suit soon enough according to Mike Constantino, Country Sales Director of Yahoo Philippines at the recently concluded Yahoo TechnoStorm event at Market! Market!
So what kind of a change can we expect? If you’ve been on the Yahoo PH page recently, you’ll see a small headline slider close to the top of the page where you’ll find all the top news. Further down, you’ll find a few more categorized stories, but then the Yahoo PH page ends abruptly with just two scrolls of the mouse wheel. Seems like things could use a bit of work, especially since all hopes of further engagement end once you’re no longer able to scroll any further down for more content.
The international Yahoo page is different. It features a much bigger headline slider that accommodates even more posts than the slider from the old format did. Beneath it, you’ll find not just a few stories per category, but an endless feed of news. Mike revealed that the feed was a result of an algorithm that tracks your browsing habits and delivers the most relevant news that might be of interest to you. As you keep scrolling, you’ll notice the news starting to get less and less relevant, but it will never stop delivering news as it keeps expanding its threshold of relevance.
How Does Yahoo Earn From This?
Google monetizes search through ads. Yahoo still sees a small chunk of search go its way, but it can’t possibly be enough to support a company as large as it is. So how does it make money of this strategy? The answer is still ads, but not like AdSense or AdWords — at least, not as much. Remember that algorithm that drives the news feed? It also delivers ads every so often within the feed. And because the ads sort of look like news items, there is a pretty good chance a user will click on them. The ads are also as relevant as the news is within the feeds since the algorithm also matches which ads are most relevant to your interests.
The ads don’t stop at the feed either. If you click on some of the articles, you’ll notice these huge ads that flank the actual content on either side. And they’re just as relevant to you as the ads that were on the feed. Reading an article about hair care? You might see an ad for a new hair product. Reading how to maintain your car? You might get ads related to car services. Yahoo uses its strength as a content hub and combines it with ad delivery in order to generate revenue, and Yahoo PH will soon get a facelift that will put all of this into play.
Is Yahoo the New CNN?
With its renewed focus on content creation and delivery, Yahoo and Yahoo PH has a great opportunity to recapture interest. They’re still a great source of news and still the number one email service in the Philippines, both of which are great opportunities to display ads and generate revenue. To be honest, I’ve never actually used CNN or their local counterparts to get my news. I always got my updates from Yahoo PH. And the impending facelift is sure to make it even more of a black hole for attention that it already was for me.