SEMs crave more search ad competition, eye MS-Yahoo

Advertisers would benefit from a more balanced competitive environment.

If Microsoft acquires Yahoo, the search engine ad market could gain a viable and sorely needed competitor to Google, but only if the post-merger integration is done with speed and precision.

That's the opinion of several search engine marketing (SEM) firms with experience helping clients design and manage campaigns on the Google, Yahoo and Microsoft search ad platforms.

As things stand now, Google has an overwhelming dominance of this market thanks to the massive popularity of its search engine, which gives its ads a wider and deeper distribution reach that dwarfs that of Microsoft and Yahoo.

Inevitably, most search ad budgets are devoted to Google campaigns, but advertisers would benefit from a more balanced competitive environment in which an alternative ad platform isn't discarded as an option purely on the basis of its limited reach, those interviewed said.

"We feel that a successful acquisition and integration of their [Microsoft's and Yahoo's] offerings offers the potential of forming a credible competitor to Google," said Noah Elkin, vice president of corporate strategy for digital marketing firm Steak Media.

This is important, especially now that Yahoo may outsource its search advertising business to Google. "The dominance of any one company in a given area is not good for the industry. We believe that competition is key to delivering value to advertisers," Elkin wrote via e-mail.

Search advertising is the largest segment of the overall online ad market, accounting for about 40 percent of spending in the U.S. last year, according to IDC. Google nabbed almost 80 percent of the about US$10.2 billion spent in search ads in the U.S. in 2007, followed by Yahoo with about 12 percent and Microsoft with 6 percent, according to IDC.

Anna Sebestyen, a freelance search marketer, works primarily with small and medium-size clients whose search ad budgets are smaller than those of large companies, so the opportunity to give Yahoo and Microsoft a shot at clients' campaigns is more limited.

"I give a chance to MSN and Yahoo whenever I can to see the specific reaction in a certain campaign, but my tests so far have shown that my clients' money is better spent, ROI is higher -- with the limited budget they have -- on Google, currently," she said via e-mail.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Juan Carlos Perez

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

I’m a tradesman who is on the road all of the time and whose car is his office. The RJ-4230B is ideal for me and makes a key part of my job much easier and also makes my business appear more professional. I would give it 4.5 stars out of 5. I highly recommend it to any other tradies who are looking for way to print documents for their customers.

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?