Yahoo! Sponsored: Relevancy Smack-down

Yahoo! Sponsored UpgradesThe time of coasting thru Yahoo! Sponsored is over. Dealing the one-two punch to the Overture schematic they have announced a date for the implementation of their new quality algorithm we all knew was coming, February 5th, 2007. Yahoo! Sponsored is adopting a similar strategy as Google AdWords and will start using the quality and relevancy of the ad’s to determine ad position and therefore bid price. Here is an excerpt from the announcement:

  • Both bid amount and ad quality will determine an ad’s rank in search results beginning February 5, 2007.
  • This will replace the current method, in which ads are ranked by bid amount only (bid-to-position).
  • This is designed to allow you to focus less on competitive bidding practices and more on the quality of your ads.
  • By improving the quality of your ads and making them more relevant to users, you may be rewarded with a better ranking and/or a lower cost for your ads.

So what is â€Å”Ad Quality” you may ask… Well here is what Yahoo! has to say about it:

  • The ad’s historical performance – its click-through rate relative to competitors and normalized for position.
  • The ad’s expected performance – determined by various relevance factors considered by Yahoo!’s ranking algorithms, relative to other ads displayed at the same time.

Oh, and this too:

  • We recommend that you review your current max bids. Keep in mind you may be charged up to this amount.
  • Standard match type ads will no longer receive priority placement over Advanced match type ads.
  • Fewer Sponsored Search results may now appear at the very top of the page for certain search terms.
  • Starting on February 5 there will be a transition period during which forecasting tools will accumulate more data about the new ranking model to provide better traffic estimates.

For those of us that like pictures here’s the idea:

YAhoo! Rank Model

Juicy stuff. The challenge is on!

This will put a serious damper on the â€Å”dump-and-run” accounts which now plague the relevancy of search results over at Yahoo!. This of course is great news for those who have a fondness of creating optimized accounts and ad copy but will mean a crap-ton load of work for those reconciling client accounts. This change, on top of the new transition to the Panama interface (what is with their transition methods here anyway??) represents a huge workload for those of us in the CPC game. What they should have done is just close everyone’s account and say â€Å”OK, now start over.” I am beginning to think it may have been easier this way.

I will give kudos to Yahoo!’s bulk upload feature however. While a bit buggy at times it can be a life saver during these transition times and even has the feature of allowing you to upload your AdWords account directly into the Panama interface. And also a great thanks for the faster ad review times, now minutes as opposed to days.

If you can’t beat ‘em join ‘em.

Good luck everyone.

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1 Comment

  1. your_store
    Jan 24, 2007

    Argh.. I’d already spent the last two day reformatting 100k keywords to work in Panama, now this bombshell:

    “Standard match type ads will no longer receive priority placement over Advanced match type ads.”

    I imagine Standard will still trump Advanced due to quality score, but I *really* wish they would have at least given Standard a couple of bonus points.

    BTW, great blog. I don’t know how you guys have been under my radar for so long. Especially since I’m based out of Wilmington.

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