Q: My web site is on Page 1 in Google, but it is almost nowhere to be found in Yahoo! What have I done wrong?

A: The easy answer to this question is, “Why do you care?” After all, Yahoo! holds less than a quarter of the search engine market while Google has almost 60 percent, according to ComScore.

Q: But that market share in Yahoo! could still net significant revenue for my web site….

A: Good point. There are some things you can do to increase your Yahoo! ranking, if you really desire to make the effort.

Q: Where do I start?

A: Submitting your web site and sitemap to Yahoo! is a good start. Beyond that, there are paid strategies working directly with Yahoo! which could help. Yahoo! has paid entities associated with their search engines such as Yahoo! Directory. This solution can be pricey, and there is no guarantee that your web site will go to No. 1 with it. However, the general consensus is that the strategy can’t hurt, and for the relative investment it can be a low-risk strategy to help your traffic.

Q: Are there any other paid inclusion tactics from Yahoo?

A: I’m glad you asked. There does happen to be a fairly new Yahoo! feature called Search Submit Pro. This feature is rare since it allows you to purchase pay-per-click listings which appear among the organic search results. Using this feature ensures that pages which would otherwise not be included in the organic Yahoo! search are included, yet the results look the same as other Yahoo! search results. Of course, Yahoo! recommends a budget of $5,000 per month or 1000 URLs in order to participate.

Q: Without giving money to Yahoo!, is there another way to move up on the organic search?

A: Of course! Most of the methods involving Yahoo! organic search are similar to Google. For example, content is still king, links are still important, and the methods for optimizing particular pages are pretty much the same. However, the importance of linking seems to be lessened in Yahoo! compared to Google. In some cases, quantity seems to be stressed by the Yahoo! search engine more than quality compared with Google. Additionally, some on-page features that have been recommended for search since the beginning of time are still stressed by Yahoo! more so than Google, such as keyword meta tags.

Q: Doesn’t this strategy create a user experience that is less friendly than Google?

A: User experience is very much in the eye of the beholder. Still, simply based on the user stats and market share among search engines, Google’s user friendliness seems to be greater than Yahoo! Yahoo! generates much of its revenue with aspects that have absolutely nothing to do with search and little direct contact with technology interests such as games, chat rooms, and editorial content. Search is likely Yahoo’s largest priority, but they are able to make revenue and survive by other means.

Seth Trachtman is a Web Marketing Account Manager for The Net Impact Web Design St. Louis.

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