Search Engine Stocks Taking A Beating

Across the board, the search engines are being hit just as bad as every other stock on the international exchanges. Guess the ability to measure profitability for the buyers of search products, the growing numbers of users and the attraction of Fortune 500 companies to their usage has not kept our industry's lights from dimming.

The only saving grace is that it is not a dotcom bubble.... we are possibly on the brink of a global recession.

The last two weeks have been particularly rough on Google and Yahoo - with both at serious lows.

It will be interesting to see what Yahoo has to say at their quarterly report January 29th, considering they are supposed to be making major layoffs over the next couple of weeks. Even Alibaba - the Chinese Ebay - could not sustain the jump of their initial IPO late last year and help one of their major investors (Yahoo owns 35 percent of Alibaba). The layoffs are also being done by Yahoo China which Alibaba owns in the deal the made with Yahoo.

"Yahoo is navigating the waters of Internet advertising like a goldfish evading a shark, in the form of Google," the Wall Street Journal commented.

Funny Google has not been faring any better. They have fallen back from 741 late last year to under 550 today.

The surprising thing about this is search can be measured better than any other form of advertising, so users can be proactive - a major plus that can be a great plus for companies even if a major recession unfolds.... let's see what Jerry Yang has to say next week.

About the author

Frank Watson has been involved with the Web since it started. For the past five years, he headed SEM for FXCM -- at one time one of the top 25 spenders with AdWords. He has worked with most of the major analytics companies and pioneered the ability to tie online marketing with offline conversion.

He has now started his own marketing agency, Kangamurra Media. This new venture will keep him busy when he is not editing the Search Engine Watch forums, blogging at a number of authoritative sites, and developing some interesting online community sites.

He was one of the first 100 AdWords Professionals, a Yahoo and Overture Ambassador, and a member or mod of many of the industry forums. He is also on the Click Quality Council and has worked hard to diminish click fraud.