Posted: February 19th, 2010
After many months of finger-crossing, both the U.S. Department of Justice and the E.U.’s legislative European Commission have given the green light to the proposed search agreement between Microsoft and Yahoo. It’s been a rough ride between the second and third-place search engines, which even includes some tough words being thrown at each other in the past. Many former Yahoo employees have even opted to put their names onto Google’s payroll instead.
With the new search deal, Microsoft will be handling all of Yahoo’s algorithmic and paid search platforms, such that the listings in Yahoo will be the same as those in Bing (same algorithm). An excerpt of the press release states:
SUNNYVALE, Calif. & REDMOND, Wash.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Microsoft (Nasdaq:MSFT – News) and Yahoo! (Nasdaq:YHOO – News) announced today that they have received clearance for their search agreement, without restrictions, from both the U.S. Department of Justice and the European Commission, and will now turn their attention to beginning the process of implementing the deal.
Implementation of the deal is expected to begin in the coming days and will involve transitioning Yahoo!’s algorithmic and paid search platforms to Microsoft, with Yahoo! becoming the exclusive relationship sales force for both companies’ premium search advertisers globally. Once the transition is completed, the companies’ unified search marketplace will deliver improved innovation for consumers, better volume and efficiency for advertisers and better monetization opportunities for web publishers through a platform that contains a larger pool of search queries.
Combining the search volume for both Yahoo and Bing does make it more attractive of a platform to advertisers, although the sum of their query levels are still shadowed by those of Google.
Now you might be thinking, if Yahoo’s search results will essentially be the same as Bing’s, then what’s the point of having both? Well, Yahoo believes that it will continue to be a player in search, by focusing on interfaces and the like, and improving areas of the user experience that don’t involve what the actual results are in the SERPs. It will be interesting to follow how Yahoo and Bing do in the coming years.