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Internet Marketing July 20th, 2009
Despite the ‘on again’ and ‘off again’ talks of a Yahoo! acquisition by Microsoft dating back to early 2008, rumour has it that we are now just days away from a joint venture announcement between the two companies.
While varying rumours have surfaced about the scope of the Yahoo! buyout by Microsoft it now seems safe to say that this will not be a complete buyout of the company but rather something in the middle of a buyout and what Microsoft earlier agreed to with Facebook.
It is rumoured now that Microsoft is very close to making an agreement that will ensure:
While we have heard these talks before, it certainly appears that a deal is imminent. Both sides including Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and Yahoo! CEO Carol Bartz are currently in talks and apparently have worked out many of the earlier shortcomings.
According to whichever search engine market share report you read they all say basically the same thing; Google has about 65%-80% of all search related inquiries and the combination of Yahoo! and Microsoft have anywhere from 15%-30%.
This market share information along with 2 key recent trends has caused Yahoo! to revisit their own search strategy:
These points have likely caused Yahoo! to be a little softer in their approach with Microsoft. With a partnership in place they can then work together in attempting to take market share away from Google.
There will be many opinions about the outcomes of this partnership. Some will see the partnership as a negative seeing that less competition means the centralization of power in the search industry. Others will see this partnership as a positive, pointing to the fact both Yahoo! and Microsoft will be able to be more innovative in collaboration and the result will be a more formidable competitor for Google.
It is my own belief that this decision was a necessary one for both Microsoft and Yahoo!
Google has been running along pretty much unchallenged now for several years. They have been doing many things right both inside and out. The recent moves by Microsoft, although currently smaller in scope, are a step in the right direction to help increase the competitive environment of search.
The end result will hopefully mean a better product for the beneficiary – the searchers themselves!