A Glimpse into the Lycos Search Engine

    December 19, 2002

Recently, the Academy of Web Specialists had the good fortune of having Adam Soroca, a representative from Terra Lycos http://www.lycos.com, attend a chat session to visit with our students. Mr. Soroca provided some excellent information about Terra Lycos as well as their plans for the future.

As means of introduction, Adam is the Group Product Manager for Lycos InSite and is in charge of building a comprehensive suite of search marketing tools. He has general management responsibilities for the vision, execution, and delivery of the Web-based platforms.

Adam explained further,

“I am charged with building a search marketing platform for Lycos. We launched our first product based on paid inclusion into the FAST Web index in February of this year. We were very quickly able to prove that by nature of our brand and presence, search marketers would come to visit for search marketing services.

“Two weeks ago, we launched our second product, InSite AdBuyer, a cost-per-click ad auction engine. Both of these products are designed around the concept of contextual advertising, so that a searcher is presented with highly relevant information when performing a search.

“While our platform is currently focused on our own index, we seek to provide one-stop access for all search marketing needs, including multiple index submission and multiple bid-management capabilities. All of these are designed to drive traffic (i.e., customer acquisition). We are also looking further down the visitor experience to the ROI side to encompass campaign management.”

The following are questions asked by Academy students to Mr. Soroca.

“I see when I do a search on Lycos that there is an ‘advertisement’ on the right side. Is this the InSite AdBuyer?”

“Correct. Those are the AdBuyer cost-per-click ads. Our advertisers bid to be in the 1st, 2nd or 3rd positions.

“These are highly targeted ads as they are exact match keyword driven. So behind the scenes, advertisers are involved in a bidding auction to vie for that space.”

“When someone clicks the ‘place your ad here’ link, does it show what the bids are for the keywords in question, so you know what you have to bid against?”

“No, actually we don’t display the prices on the front end. To view the prices for particular keywords, advertisers must sign up for an account and view that in the advertisers’ area.”

“What results does FAST supply to Lycos?”

“FAST currently provides Lycos with our search results. Our paid inclusion platform enables Web site owners and marketers to guarantee that their Web content is included in the Web index and frequently refreshed. This differs from paid placement in that the paid inclusion customers do not necessarily show up in the top of the results just because they paid us. This content is viewed by the relevancy algorithm and displayed appropriately.

“Currently this program is available to small/mid size companies for an annual subscription. For larger companies, it will be available at a cost-per-click (those sites >1,000 URL’s). Paid placement and paid inclusion are two separate products. If you bid for placement, you pay for actual clicks. If you buy paid inclusion, that means that your pages are guaranteed to be in the Web index (spiders can’t find everything), and the content will be updated every 24-48 hours. So, if your content changes, the index will reflect that much more quickly. With an index of 2.1 billion documents, it can take FAST a while to recrawl the entire index. This program guarantees you are in there.”

Robin Nobles conducts live SEO workshops
(http://www.searchengineworkshops.com) in locations across North
America. She also teaches online SEO training
(http://www.onlinewebtraining.com). Localized SEO training is now
being offered through the Search Engine Academy.
(http://www.searchengineacademy.com) Sign up for SEO tips of the
day at mailto:seo-tip@aweber.com.