Latest on YSM’s Panama Update

A newsletter received over the weekend has provided a little bit more info about Yahoo! Search Marketing’s much publicised update.

The timeline has been left deliberately vague – “these transitions will begin in fourth quarter 2006”. Based on our past experience, US accounts will probably be moved first with UK accounts coming sometime later.

The other new information contained within the newsletter is that they are introducing the concept of Ad Groups and Campaigns. Yes actually those names – i.e. identical to AdWords. I have to admit that I have always expected the new system to be almost identical to AdWords but I am quite amused to see that they even want to use the same nomenclature.

We are anticipating that the new system will lead to increased click charges on average. However, as with Google AdWords, we expect to be able to offset much of this increase through the use of high quality targeted adverts.

Some background:

  • This is the update whose delayed launch caused a significant reduction in Yahoo!’s share price a couple of months ago.
  • Yahoo!’s current system has been widely criticised by the advertiser community for its difficult to use interface. Investors also don’t like it as it fails to monetise the “long tail of search” as effectively as Google AdWords.
  • Yahoo! Search Marketing is the rebranded Overture.

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