Can New Search Features Help Yahoo Break Away from Bing?
Oct 7th 2010 2:45AM
Updated Oct 7th 2010 2:54AM
Yahoo (YHOO) is jazzing up its Internet search results in an effort to orchestrate a revenue revival.
The additional features will begin appearing Thursday on Yahoo's U.S. website.
The new tools are designed to get people to the information they seek more quickly, especially when searching about entertainment, sports and major events.
Some of these shortcuts have already been available on Yahoo, but now there will be even more options and snapshots featured in capsules appearing at the top of the results page.
More marketing messages, including the online billboards known as display ads, may also crop up on searches that appear to be spurred by a quest to buy merchandise.
Standing Out from Bing
Yahoo hopes to distinguish itself from its Internet search partner, Microsoft's (MSFT) Bing, by making its own results more useful.
Although it's relying on Microsoft for most of its search results to save money, Yahoo still has the ability to dip into its own bag of technological tricks.
Standing apart from Bing is important to Yahoo because it only gets a cut of ad revenue from searches that are done on its site. Yahoo keeps $88 of every $100 from search advertising clicked on its site, with the rest of going to Microsoft. All the ad revenue from searches done on Bing goes to Microsoft.
Yahoo needs to do something different because its ad revenue from searches has been steadily declining. That erosion has contributed to financial funk that has battered its stock price and recently raised doubts about the turnaround plan drafted by Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz, who took the job 21 months ago and negotiated the Microsoft alliance.
The partnership was spurred by the dominance of Google (GOOG), which has established itself as the Internet's most powerful and prosperous company.