Shashi Seth, Senior Vice President of Yahoo! Search Products announced today that Bing now officially powers Yahoo's organic search results in USA and Canada, saying "Yahoo! Web, Image, and Video search experiences on both desktop and mobile devices are now powered by the Microsoft platform in the US and Canada (English), with more markets to come."
What does this mean for you?
Yahoo will still power their own search advertising (PPC) platform until later in the year when Microsoft Adcenter is integrated. This integration is expected to be completed in October, just before the holiday season, so start planning your paid search holiday campaigns to run on Adcenter, and bear in mind that there is likely to be new cost-per-click pricing to contend with. You will need to adjust your strategy accordingly.
Furthermore, as the Bing and Microsoft Adcenter integration is rolled out worldwide to all Yahoo Search properties you are likely to see a steady increase in paid search inventory on Microsoft Adcenter. An increase in advertising inventory naturally brings more advertisers which will bring a more volatile auction for clicks. Cost-per-click costs on Adcenter are likely to rise as inventory increases.
Resident SEW expert Alex Cohen, also commented on the change, saying "You will not be able to bid separately on Yahoo vs. Bing after the integration... For the first time, we'll have a viable and scalable alternative to Google. That will attract more advertisers, more advertising budgets and, thus, more competition for auctions."
What does it mean for the industry?
It's nothing new for Yahoo to have it's search results syndicated by other players. Before Yahoo had their own crawler, their backfill results were powered by Inktomi, AltaVista and finally Google (in that order). SEO strategies to gain traction on Yahoo, remained focussed on those engines rather than Yahoo itself.
However, Yahoo does sit on a a goldmine of end user data about search behavior, which Bing now stands to benefit from. End user data is considered to be one of the strongest signals to search engines on how to perfect the algorithm and search experience, so we might speculate that Bing is likely to improve their own index.
Shashi Seth, told us last week that "Yahoo Remains Committed To Search" which he drove home further in the blog announcement today, stating, "Yahoo! will continue to drive technology innovation in the search experience to bring more value to users and advertisers alike. We are focused on creating rich, immersive experiences that foster serendipitous discovery for people across the Yahoo! network... we are also working hard on finalizing our revenue model for the Yahoo! Search BOSS program going forward, and will be offering other search-related tools for publishers in the months to come."