The Day I’ll Yahoo: x 100,000,000 other users

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Jeremy Z. points to Google’s feather-ruffling “here we go again protecting our trademark” post, and reaction to it that includes one guy telling Google to “shove its lexographical advice up your…”

True enough. You’re not going to track down every radio DJ and evening news anchor from Lindsay, ON to Tallahassee, FL, and points beyond, at this stage, and successfully convince them to stop saying “Google it.”

Then Jeremy suggests you could always Yahoo. Do you? Do I? Sure, in some ways. But I don’t really count.

What would really get folks talking, and Yahoo’ing? I mean the search engine, not all the other stuff.

How about make this look a lot more like this? Wouldn’t that be a bold move? Would Yahoo’s revenues collapse? Some of their channel managers get noses out of joint? Top execs’ compensation models be perturbed? Maybe some of that, but the overall revenue from the all-important search channel would rise. street cred and Credibility with The Street would both rise.

As it stands, even search.yahoo.com is more cluttered than www.google.com. How about – take what’s on that page, lose the news headlines, and make that the yahoo.com home page for a week? Try it a few weeks out of the year. Test it. Freak out some of your shareholders, for the sake of user impact and possible long-term profitability. That’s what Google would do!

Trick #2: browser toolbar default. Please use Yahoo on Firefox, Yahoo asks. Unfortunately that’s going to be a slow build, what with Google being most people’s default. Microsoft still has 60%+ browser share, so that might be a place to start, when Microsoft finally admits its attempt to regain search market share is doomed. Yahoo, Microsoft: you guys have a friendship to build?

I realize Altavista tried this “rediscovery of the clean page” ploy with Raging Search, and it was too late. Google had won. But Yahoo’s still in the game, and yahoo.com is still a great destination and brand. It’s not the same as AV.


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Andrew Goodman is Principal of Page Zero Media, a marketing consultancy which focuses on maximizing clients’ paid search marketing campaigns.

In 1999 Andrew co-founded Traffick.com, an acclaimed “guide to portals” which foresaw the rise of trends such as paid search and semantic analysis.

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