Lee Odden

Yahoo Panama Recent Upgrades

Yahoo Panama is on the upgrade path today with several new features to help advertisers streamline account management:

Move/copy keywords: You can now move and copy keywords from one ad group to another without doing the copy/paste/delete thing. On the Ad Group page under the “Campaigns” tab, you’ll now see a “Move” button which will allow you to move or copy keywords from one ad group to another ad group.” Note that there is still a 1000 keyword limit per ad group.

Streamline keyword selector tool: Yahoo now provides an estimate of the monthly searches on each keyword suggested. This provides more detailed information on the traffic that this keyword may be able to generate. As before, you can select the keywords you wish to add by clicking the box next to the suggestions and clicking “Add Keywords.”

Lee Odden

Yahoo Search Marketing Launches Quality Based Pricing

Earlier today Yahoo Search Marketing announced they will now provide free, open access to the “Panama” search marketing application program interfaces (APIs) through the launch of the Commercial API Program. Commercial clients (big agencies) will also be offered optional fee-based, value-added services that come in three flavors: basic, advanced and elite.

Yahoo’s been busy today, because this evening I got the heads up Y!SM is rolling out quality based pricing across it’s paid search and contextual advertising networks.

Here’s the lowdown on quality based pricing from Yahoo:

“Essentially, it assesses the quality of a publisher’s traffic based upon the publisher’s ability to deliver more interested, high-value potential customers to Yahoo!’s advertisers. A few of the factors considered by quality-based pricing include publisher conversion rates, traffic source and implementation type. Depending on the quality of a given publisher’s traffic, the cost of an advertiser’s click can be automatically discounted by a certain percentage.”

Lee Odden

Yahoo Contest Giving $25k Away in Advertising

Normally we don’t really cover a lot of industry news here at Online Marketing Blog.  We leave that to the experts at Search Engine Watch, Search Engine Land, Search Engine Journal and Marketing Pilgrim. However, when a search engine reaches out with a particularly interesting message, we can make exceptions.

For example, the new “Ultimate Connection” contest from Yahoo Search Marketing which involves Ivanka Trump. I had to read that twice and thought it an interesting choice of celebrity.    Whenever I hear about search marketing contests involving essays, I always think of Marketing Pilgrim’s Scholarship, but such methods of promotion have been around a lot longer than SEO blogs.

Lee Odden

The Future of Search Engine Innovation

Ravi Raj Ron Belanger
From the conference session handbook: The Future of Search Engine Innovation – As search engines evolve, so must the methods of the marketers. We’re seeing the emergence of smart mashups, of visual search engines and personalized search. What does the future hold for search marketers and advertisers as they struggle to match speed of improvement being set by the engines themselves?

This session was moderated by David Berkowitz of 360i and included: Ron Belanger of Yahoo!, Paul Martino of Aggregate Knowledge, Chase Norlin of Pixsy filling in for Dr. Barney Pell of Powerset, and Ravi Raj from Kosmix.

First up is Ron Belanger who basically sums up three areas of focus for Yahoo in terms of search engine innovation. They include:
1. Getting search to mobile

Lee Odden

Yahoo! Testing Search Results Interface

Lee Odden     Online Marketing, Yahoo

As Karl Ribas found recently, Yahoo is testing some new search results page today. Funny thing is, I don’t use Yahoo standard search all that much but I couldn’t find what I was looking for on Google. (Note: the query in the screenshot is not what I was looking for)

New Yahoo Search Interface
Click for larger version

As Barry has also noted over at Search Engine Land, blue doesn’t really seem like “Yahoo”, it seems more like another company. It’s purple (my favorite color) that I think of when I think Yahoo.

Lee Odden

SES New York Day 3 Videos

I was able to do just two video interviews before my camera got dropped in a glass of water. I’ll have to explain that in another post.

[googlevideo]http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=5655668133485217314&hl=en[/googlevideo]

Here’s Michael Gray, aka graywolf, just before our session with Todd Mailicoat and Neil Patel on “Social Bookmark Strategies” where he talks about tips for conference goers. Coverage of that session can be found at The Lisa, Search Engine Roundtable, Small Business SEM and CenterNetworks.

[googlevideo]http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-4176575133923097250&hl=en[/googlevideo]

I also caught up with Mona Elesseily from Page Zero where she talks about Yahoo Panama pros and cons. Also two new Panama enhancements: Quality based bidding and being able to opt out of Yahoo’s content network.

Lee Odden

Search Engines Support Sitemaps Autodiscovery

The good people at Ask.com pinged me this morning that Google, Yahoo!, Microsoft Live Search and Ask.com announced support of autodiscovery for Sitemaps today.

WebProNews published an announcement about the search engines Google and Yahoo agreeing to work on a common sitemaps standard and the launch of sitemaps.org at the WebmasterWorld Pubcon conference in Las Vegas last year.

The new open-format autodiscovery allows webmasters to specify the location of their sitemaps within their robots.txt file, eliminating the need to submit sitemaps to each search engine separately. The updated Sitemap protocol has benefits for site publishers, the search engines as well as searchers. Ask.com is also supporting manual submissions of sitemaps via a ping url.

Find more coverage on this over at Search Engine Land, “Search Engines Unite on Sitemaps“.

Lee Odden

Yahoo Adds Quality Index to Search Marketing Ads

Yahoo! has announced that on Feb 5th, they will be introducing a quality score to the Yahoo Search Marketing ad system, “Panama”. To date, placement of ads on Yahoo and their network have been based on bid price alone. From the press release:

“The quality of an ad will be determined by its historical performance in the new system and its expected performance relative to other ads displayed at the same time. Ads of higher quality will generally receive better placement on the results page.”

Advertisers will be able to see the “quality index” for their ads within Panama along with an estimated average position and estimated forecast of clicks for their ad campaigns, based on budget allocation and ad quality.

Lee Odden

Panama Geo-Targeting Update

Lee Odden     Online Marketing, Yahoo

Yesterday I posted a link to aimclear’s blog about his frustrations with getting Yahoo geo targeting features to work for him. A thread had also been started at Search Engine Watch forum which apparently has been pulled, but thanks to Google cache, I was able to grab some of the info.

Basically, ackmnmn from aimclear says that a support person at Yahoo informed him that Yahoo recognized some aspects of geo targeting were not working and that Yahoo would be disabling geo targeting or parts of it.

In the same SEW forum thread, YahooSarah chimed in with:

“We are seeing DMA targeted ads are not showing up in more specific sub-DMA geo-modified (geo-tagged) queries. Example: ‚ÄúPasadena hotel‚Äù will not be matched to Los Angeles DMA targeted keyword, ‚Äúhotel‚Äù. You should start to see improvements the week of January 15.”

Lee Odden

Yahoo Panama – Interview with John Slade of Yahoo!

Spotlight on Search: Interview with John Slade of Yahoo!

John Slade
There has been quite a bit of buzz on the paid search marketing front with the launch of the new Yahoo! Search Advertising platform aka “Panama”. At the WebmasterWorld Pubcon conference in Las Vegas, Yahoo! announced the launch during a sponsored lunch. Dan Zarrella did a good a review of that session here.

Our YSM account recently went through the upgrade and we’re going through the process of getting familiar with all the new platform features. After talking to my contact at Yahoo PR as well as Mona Elesseily from Page Zero who has written a book about the Yahoo Search Marketing program, I thought it would be good to get some insight directly from Yahoo for Online Marketing Blog readers. John Slade, Senior Director of Yahoo Global Product Management was kind enough to field a few questions for me.

Lee Odden

Search and Social Media News Thursday

Ron Belanger from Yahoo does a decent job explaining, “Engagement, Search and Social Media” in a video over at iMedia Connection. I like the context in which he presents social search – as a third channel to organic and PPC. Now if iMedia just offered some social bookmark links for the video!

WSJ posits a good question: “Google Tests New Ad Offerings — But Will Advertisers Follow?” In order to accomplish the transfer of ad dollars to other ad formats, Google will need to change existing mindsets about advertising in print, on radio and TV as being too expensive or complicated.

B2B Online’s recent survey gives us BtoB marketers a nice gift: “62.7% of marketers plan to boost budgets in 2007

Pandia posts it’s Google Santa wish list and Google is listening.

Lee Odden

Getting Your Web Site Noticed

When the Yahoo Publisher Network blog editor Michael Mattis asked me to write an short marketing article for small businesses I knew exactly what to write about. As much as anyone, I am a proponent of new and interesting online marketing strategies like using social media for marketing, but I am also a firm believer in tried and true tactics, such as promoting one’s site offline.

After going through the routine hoops with Yahoo, the article has published on the YPN blog today, “Signal to Noise”. The article covers the basics as well as a few new, low cost tactics including:

  • Market offline, as well as online
  • Announce your site
  • Market with a blog
  • Optimize content and links
  • Keep your content fresh