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Old 08-17-2005   #1
sebastian
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Moderator Note: New topic split from Details On New Yahoo Direct Traffic Center.

And while I struggle with the DTC, Overture's partner sites are also becoming a real problem. I brought this up in another thread, but Yahoo seems to be partnering with FFA link page builders and even slapping their logo right on the page. These sites carry no content and serve no real purpose other than generate more money for Yahoo. Here's three examples:

1) http://www.resultsifter.com

2) http://www.trustedsearch.net

3) www.steadysearch.com

In these three examples, both sites have the exact same links, absolutely zero content and all the links are focused on the "high dollar" revenue links only like mortgages, travel, real estate, pharamceuticals ...the usual suspects.

I think everyone in the search industry agrees these pages are pure garbage, but somehow some marketing folks at Yahoo can rationalize sponsoring such spammy pages.... although, if on the other side of the fence, you have to believe they would never "use" such pages.

hypocritical and typical big business approach.

so, yea - discovery - you are right on track. If we cannot control any aspect of where I listings show, we end up getting killed by little, and big, sites driving useless traffic. Add all the little sites up and it becomes significant clicks equating to significant dollars. The only problem is ::: no significant conversions :::


I would love to hear Yahoo rationalize these sites. ...absolutely love to watch them stammer through an explanation showcasing these sites as beneficial additions to internet content and usability.

Last edited by dannysullivan : 08-18-2005 at 07:26 AM.
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Old 08-18-2005   #2
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Yeah, I don't tend to like those type of sites either. But Google also does the same through its formerly named Domain Park program. The sites aren't spam but rather placeholders for a domain. And I agree, I've long felt they don't offer real value to a user.
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Old 08-18-2005   #3
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Danny ...and others:

The real problem lies in quantity. What happens to the quality of Yahoo PPC as times goes on and more and more of these sites are created. Everyone seems to agree that these sites generate a number of clicks but almost zero conversions. With this being the case, our ROIs will continue to diminish. I find it hard to believe that senior staff would be the ones to agree with this viral approach, but regardless, I only see Yahoo adding more and more of these worthless partners. Being a public company they must show revenue growth over time. There is no better way to do that than to create these sites and capitalize on the "newbie" web surfer.

It's all very "gator"-esque if you ask me.

Another interesting study would be the "psychology" of these sites. I would think that these sites tend to garner clicks from people just randomly surfing around. These sites never rank well and are nonexistent in high-traffic directories; therefore, the only way they are found is by accident. It's not like anyone would bookmark these sites.

So, one would have to believe most of this traffic is "by accident" and once people land on these pages, they just click around out of boredom, ignorance or some other factor certainly not related to converting for the advertiser.

The proof is in the results. Almost every advertiser abhors these type of sites and I truly believe Yahoo's association and/or creation of them erodes its brand significantly. ...at least in the eyes of Internet professionals. And if we continue to see our ROIs dip compounded by additional clicks from these garbage placeholder sites, we will eventually find better solutions.

Again, I would love to hear Yahoo's rationalization as to why they believe littering the internet with these sites is responsible and beneficial.
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Old 08-18-2005   #4
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Parked domains and/or domains that get type-in traffic but have no original content may have little to offer web visitors, but is it better for the visitors to return a 404 error page or a web search page of some kind? And if the latter is better, monetizing it is logical. (This assumes that promotion is passive - if the no-content sites are being promoted in paid search or pumping massive quantities of pages into the organic SERPs, then I have a bigger problem with them.)
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Old 08-18-2005   #5
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True ...but this is not a situation of custom 404 pages.

Any responsible developer would agree that custom 404 pages are far more beneficial and user-friendly than cryptic server 404 pages; but that point is irrelevant for this discussion.

These domains in the first post are created solely as Yahoo PPC link farms.

1) They have identical content. From my understanding, search engines like Yahoo are supposed to frown upon duplicate content - so how can they rationalize these pages? ...and we aren't talking about some duplication, we are talking about word-for-word link and subject duplication. - there is absolutely no difference in the pages at all ...except the domain name.

2) Zero content. Again from my understanding, the engines do not like these types of sites. How can one side of the house think its ok and the other side of the house say it's not?

3) Terrible conversions. These sites have proven time and time again that they never convert. If they never, ever convert what benefit do they bring the advertiser. Please don't try to say, "branding".
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