This day in search marketing history: February 4

This day in search marketing history: February 4

MicroHoo Day 4, plus: Google expands phrase match, Google Adds JSON-LD support, reconsideration requests and more.

Microsoft’s bid to buy Yahoo, Day 4

In 2008, there were some big developments following the news of Microsoft’s bid to purchase Yahoo. 

Google wasn’t happy about the news. The company objected, suggesting that the move would hurt what it called the underlying principles of the internet: “openness and innovation.”

There was some ironic back and forth, as Google had spent the past year arguing that it should be able to acquire DoubleClick, which Microsoft argued against because it would make Google too dominant in online advertising.

Meanwhile, was Yahoo considering an alliance with Google? And why did Google CEO Eric Schmidt call Yahoo CEO Jerry Yang to offer Yahoo help?

And what about post-acquisition “integration” issues? Local, maps, and mobile were areas where both companies had made significant investments but also had significant duplication and redundancy.

Microsoft sounded pretty confident the deal would happen. As Kevin Johnson put it:

  • “It doesn’t make sense to have thousands of engineers at Yahoo working on a search index, thousands of engineers at Microsoft working on the same search index. By combining, we can have one team of people across the two companies working on the search index, and then have others continue to focus on areas where we’ve defined differentiation in search. New search verticals and expanded user experience for search. We’ve got so many ideas, more engineers applied to those ideas will drive breakthroughs in search.”

Dig deeper:

  • Google Objects To Microsoft & Yahoo Wedding; Microsoft Responds — Irony All Around
  • Can Google Save Yahoo By Taking Over Search?
  • A Local Look At Microsoft’s Bid For Yahoo
  • Yahoo! Addresses The Troops (And So Does Microsoft)
  • Microhoo Day 4: In Other News, Microsoft To Borrow To Buy Yahoo & Google Below $500

Also on this day

Enhanced conversions: Google tests global site tags with automatic collection

2022: The global site tag could now automatically collect the information (e.g., email, telephone number) that a user submitted on the website.

Microsoft Bing adds automobile and car search features

2022: There were links to the MSN Autos marketplace in the knowledge panels for these car-related searches under “learn more” and “shop used cars” right above the car specifications.

Google expands phrase match to include broad match modifier traffic

2021: Phrase match would expand to include additional broad match modifier traffic and support for broad match modifier would end.

5 takeaways for marketers from Google’s Q4 2019 earnings

2020: For the first time, the company disclosed YouTube advertising revenues.

Hitwise halts some reporting services in wake of Jumpshot’s closing

2020: Hitwise informed its customers that daily, weekly and monthly metric updates were on pause until further notice.

Filter, sort, bulk manage product groups in Microsoft Shopping soon

2020: Scripts were also coming to Shopping campaigns in Microsoft Advertising.

Bing doesn’t show ads for queries around Super Bowl commercials, while Google does

2019: The company’s primary goal was not to drive revenue and chose not to monetize search results.

Survey: Local SEO an ‘artisanal’ discipline dominated by small agencies

2019: Roughly 53% of firms doing local SEO had 10 or fewer clients.

Google Adds JSON-LD Support For Structured Data Markup

2016: Google started supporting JSON-LD for structured data markup for reviews and products rich snippets.

Google Revamps Mobile Travel Search Results, Almost Making Web Results Irrelevant

2016: Once you clicked on the “more destinations” button, Google led you into a travel search experience that made it harder to view organic search results.

Bing Updates Android & iOS Apps To Enable More Finding With Less Searching

2016: The idea, according to Microsoft, was to help users “find” and “do” faster.

Google Expands Webmaster Documentation Around Reconsideration Requests

2015: Google clarified and expanded on their reconsideration request documentation for those who had been hit by a Google manual action.

Report: Google Will Get Access To Twitter’s Firehose Again

2015: The agreement came 3+ years after a similar arrangement ended. It would make tweets easier to find via search.

Google Answers Now Showing Blue Icons Linking To Publisher Sites Or More Google Answers

2015: This had been done previously for easter eggs and Google’s own content, but now it worked for third-party publishers.

Bing Ads Discusses 3 New Initiatives: Native Ads On, Mobile Ad Formats, Remarketing

2015: The company’s foray into native advertising would harness intent signals from Bing Ads.

With Nadella’s Appointment, The “Search CEOs” Now Run Google, Yahoo & Microsoft

2014: For the first time in ages, the three major search companies in the US were all run by CEOs who either came out of a search background or had a solid understanding of it.

Google AdWords To Roll Out Flexible Conversion Counting, Says Goodbye To 1 Per-Click, Many-Per-Click

2014: Converted clicks = Conversions (1 per-click) and Conversions = Conversions (many-per-click).

Google’s DoubleClick Search Ramps Focus On PLAs And Ecommerce With New Commerce Suite

2014: The suite was comprised of two new capabilities: Dynamic Product Listing Ads creation and Product Listing Ads optimization.

Google Showing Large Video Embeds In Some Search Results

2014: Searching Google for video-related content would return a large, playable, video directly at the top of the search results.

Google Maps App Now Continually Searching For Faster Route

2014: The app would notify you if a faster route was available while you were in transit.

Beyonce, Blackout, Ravens And M&Ms — What We Searched For During Super Bowl 2013

2013: Viewers turned to their devices to ask [why did the lights go out], [superdome power outage] and [what caused power outage].

Bing: Why Google’s Wrong In Its Accusations

2011: Bing said it has search signal, not Google signal.

Yelp: 35 Percent Of Searches Mobile Now

2011: The mobile audience on Yelp was more active and engaged than its PC audience.

Search In Pics: Google Sweden License Plate, Yahoo Beach Sandals & Google Privacy Cup

2011: The latest images culled from the web, showing what people eat at the search engine companies, how they play, who they meet, where they speak, what toys they have, and more.

Google Maps To Add “Google Store Views”

2010: Google Store Views would allow people to virtually walk into the store, off of Google Street Views.

Yahoo Sells “Non-Core” Asset HotJobs For $225 Million

2010: Yahoo would continue to have a career site, but it would be powered and populated by Monster.

2001 In Review: Search Engine Marketing Gets Respect, As Does Search Generally

2010: Major events from the year 2001 in consumer search. 

Google Latitude: Share Your Location On Google Maps

2009: More coverage: Google Latitude Turns Maps (For Mobile) Into Social Tool

Google Android Phone Finds Its Voice (Search That Is)

2009: Google was rolling out voice search on the Android platform via the new software update.

FriendFeed Improves Search Features

2009: You could use the advanced search features and then subscribe to that search via RSS.

Internet Explorer 8 Search Now Showing Instant Answers From Live Search

2009: Instant answers were shown for searches related to financial information, weather conditions, movie show times, calculations, equations, conversions, and definitions.

Yahoo Starting To Roll Out “Search Pad” Feature

2009: The application automatically collected sites and content as users conducted online research.

Google’s Influence In The Oval Office

2009: Google was the “fourth-largest corporate source of campaign cash” for President Obama’s presidential race.

Virtual Earth’s First 2009 Imagery Update

2009: The major updates included the new Digital Globe satellite imagery they recently licensed and “bird’s eye” photos of Paris, France. 

IAC Troubles,, And Post-Yahoo Search Share

2008: IAC claimed the legal battle for control of IAC’s board was impeding the company’s ability to effectively operate.

Microsoft’s Prize: Big Yahoo CPMs, Largest Display Share

2008: Yahoo ranked as the top site with just under 19% of US online display advertising.

Google Releases New Urchin Beta

2008: For those who required server-based analytics.

EU Prepares “Objections” To Google-DoubleClick Acquisition

2008: The European Union’s antitrust regulator was likely to impose conditions or ask Google for concessions in order to bless the acquisition.

Google Files Screenshots Of Compensation Tool With SEC

2008: The tool modeled the potential value of Google equity awards, including transferable stock options.

From Search Marketing Expo (SMX)

  • Tips on testing responsive search ads
  • How The Sharing Economy Will Lead To The Growth Of Online Reviews

Past contributions from Search Engine Land’s Subject Matter Experts (SMEs)

These columns are a snapshot in time and have not been updated since publishing, unless noted. Opinions expressed in these articles are those of the author and not necessarily Search Engine Land.

  • 2022: Shopify SEO Guide: How to increase organic traffic to your store by George Nguyen
  • 2022: Are you showing Gmail ads to customers who have unsubscribed? by Kirk Williams
  • 2021: Google Ads Auto Applied Recommendations: Every setting, explained by Chris Boggs
  • 2016: Google Search Partner Network: Friend Or Foe? by Andy Taylor
  • 2016: Bring Your Work Home: How To Use Google AdWords To Improve Your Love Life by Jacob Baadsgaard
  • 2016: Attributing Retail Store Transactions To Online Clicks At Keyword Level by Thomas Stern
  • 2015: Location Based Geo-Targeting Boosts Paid Search Ad Performance…Or Does It? by Wesley Young
  • 2014: Start The New Year With A PPC Health Check: Part 2 by Rebekah Schelfhout
  • 2014: The Link Builder’s Brick Wall, And How To Vault It by Julie Joyce
  • 2013: How Local Businesses Can Leverage New Facebook & Foursquare Features by Wesley Young
  • 2013: How To Do Keyword Research For Mobile SEO by Bryson Meunier
  • 2013: The Zen Of PPC Campaign Reporting by Matt van Wagner
  • 2011: Reputation Crisis: Where To Turn? by Andy Komack
  • 2011: User Considerations For Web Design And Online Marketing by Kim Krause Berg
  • 2010: Introducing Your Paid Search Dashboard by Josh Dreller
  • 2010: How To Take Keyword Research To The Next Level by Damien Bianchi
  • 2010: Doing All The Small Things Right For SEO by Marc Lyne
  • 2009: Does Auto-Matching Cause Unintentional Trademark Abuse? by Lori Weiman
  • 2009: Want More B2B Conversions? Reduce Your Visitor’s Anxiety. by Todd Miechiels
  • 2009: SEO Careers In A Recession by Duane Forrester
  • 2008: The Latest In Link Development by Vanessa Fox
  • 2008: Use Lifetime Visitor Values To Raise Bids While Increasing Profits by Brad Geddes

< February 3 | Search Marketing History | February 5 >

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