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Web 3.0 & Yahoo! (Part 3)

Posted on Wednesday, Nov 21st 2007

Web 3.0 Framework discussion

Below is a quick overview of the Web 3.0 framework for the Yahoo! sites. We have not gone into the details of all the properties, but you can review the Web 3.0 section of this site for detailed discussions on some of the vertical categories. However, here are some examples of good Web 3.0 practices within the Yahoo portfolio.

Context
Yahoo! Finance provides sub-categories under the broad categories. Retirement has been broken down into four categories, which includes A) 401(K), 403(b) and IRA B) Planning for Retirement, C) After You’ve Retired and D) Estate Planning and provides a better context to a person who is looking for retirement planning.

Yahoo! Hotjobs separates out the Contexts for Job Seekers and Employers. It also does a nice job with Industry specific categorization.

Yahoo! Travel has a very broad and vivid categorization, which gives the users both convenience and ease of choice while planning for their trip. The site provides some good contextual information for both leisure travelers and business travelers, but it doesn’t quite push Context all the way. As a result, a lot of new startups are emerging today that plan to fill some of these gaps, focusing on Family Travel, Backpacking, etc.

Content
Content has always been Yahoo’s strength and the Company has done a very good job of it on all the sites. Yahoo! has syndication deals with the best content producers in each of the respective verticals, which allows it to serve up high-quality content. Yahoo! Finance has tied up with 25 partners for assimilating financial content, which include CNNMoney, Lightbulb Press, Kiplinger, The Motley Fool, Smart Money and the Wall Street Journal, to name just a few.

Yahoo! allows users to search and book flights, hotels, cars, and also plan for their travel. The Travel Guides section provides detailed information on more than 40,000 cities and 500,000 places to stay across the world along with reviews, maps and pictures of these locations. It also covers the history, culture, accommodation, festivals, dining, drinking, nightlife entertainment, shopping, sports, special attractions of these locations. The Company is still the best aggregator of quality content, a core competency that dates back to the days of former CEO Terry Semel.

Community
Though Yahoo! has integrated community features in most of its sites, it lags its peers. The Company of course operates the hugely successful Yahoo! Answers and has integrated it almost all of its key sites but overall community still remains a sore point for Yahoo!

However, Yahoo! Hotjobs empowered by Yahoo! Answers, allows users to share views, post questions or articles, seek advice, rate or comment on a post on the message board. Yahoo! HotJobs also allows users to chat online.

Flickr is a widely popular photo-sharing community site by Yahoo, and the best Community implementation from the Yahoo stable.

Commerce
Yahoo! earns revenues from advertisements, subscriptions and e-commerce. Yahoo! Finance provides Yahoo! Real-Time Package on a subscription basis and Yahoo! Finance Research Reports on pay per download basis. Yahoo! Finance also has a bill payment service. Yahoo! Travel through its partnership with Travelocity and other sites provide users booking facilities, which enables it to earn commission on the flights, hotels, vacations, cruises or cars booked through its sites.

Commerce in Yahoo! HotJobs is mainly through career related services like resume or cover letter writing by experts. Flickr retails cameras. It should also have a photo merchandise revenue stream, but so far, doesn’t. Yahoo! Movies retail movie tickets.

Personalization
Yahoo! Travel offers personalization through My Yahoo! It enables users to plan their trip, check and track their reservations and travel profiles, receive emails and alerts on various travel destinations, fares and newsletters, sharing of trips, etc. The site also allows users to copy and customize someone else’s trip plan. Yahoo! Finance allows users to customize the homepage to display their portfolio and track the performance of their investments.

Personalization on Yahoo! HotJobs allow users to post resumes, save searched jobs, get e-mail alerts for job offers and career advices. The site allows users to apply directly to the job postings and keep track of the companies applied to. Flickr allows users to upload, customize and organize their photographs.

Vertical Search
Yahoo! HotJobs allows both job seekers and employers to search jobs by keywords, location, job category, experience level, salary or posting date. The advanced search options help you filter your search results into metros or smaller areas. Yahoo! Travel has convenient search functions and allows users to search from a multiple range of hotels, flights, car rentals, vacations, cruises and deals. The site also allows consumers to search for hotel, flights and cars simultaneously. Flickr allows users to search photographs by tags, by date, creative commons, etc.

The trend that Yahoo needs to pay attention to is the vertical meta search engine trend in verticals like Travel, Real Estate, Jobs, etc. It is going to become a massive traffic hog, and Yahoo needs to be present in this segment.

Business Model
Yahoo earns more than 88% of its revenues from advertisements. The ad rates for the travel site are in the range of $0.32 – $0.57 CPC. Subscription rates for Yahoo! Music Unlimited is $8.99 per month. Yahoo! HotJobs earns money mainly through subscription fees, career related services and ad revenue. The ad rates vary from $52 to $57 for 25-30 days of ad posting.
Yahoo! Finance, if monetized well, should be able to attract CPMs in the $100+ range.

(To Be Continued)

[Part 1] [Part 2]

This segment is part 3 in the series : Web 3.0 & Yahoo!
1 2 3 4 5 6

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At what point will Yahoo! HotJobs (and other leading job search engines) sacrifice page views (containing ad content) in favor of returning exceedingly relevant job search results?

Jeff Tokarz Wednesday, November 21, 2007 at 8:09 AM PT

Depends on the algorithms applied to arrive at exceedingly pertinent results.

If the algirthms require 5 screens of honing the search in the front-end, then the ads can stay on.

Sramana

Sramana Mitra Wednesday, November 21, 2007 at 7:57 PM PT