Yahoo Japan Sponsored search Platform launch pushed till October

Yahoo! Japan which has been using the Yahoo! Inc platform Panama will finally migrate to a new system come mid October Yahoo Sponsored Search version 3. The technology backend is a modified version of Google’s own Adwords system but tweaked for Yahoo! Japan’s own requirements. The two company are not merged & will still be competitors in the Japanese market.

Yahoo Japan still dominates the search market but Google is not really far behind. Google Japan has been playing catchup & will carve it’s own niche in future markets especially Youtube, DSP, & Android technology. One problem for Google Japan was that it was often seen in Japan as a non Customer Support company but this year even by visiting the Google office myself I saw they are stepping up adding staff to help smaller companies. This is vital for Japan because Yahoo! Japan has had sales teams coordinating with smaller companies for years. I think this may have been the inspiration for them to launch the みんなのビジネスオンライン service that I discovered by accident.

The New platform will of course have a few changes such as

  • 4 match types instead of 2
  • Account daily spending cap will be eliminated
  • For mobile you may not target each carrier individually.
  • Agencies will have one login for all accounts.
  • Yahoo’s Keyword Suggestion Tool will be updated to include mobile stats

Yahoo! Japan will try to make the migration as simple as possible & will alert customers if there are any issues. Expect not to be able to upload new campaigns, keywords, or copy for about two weeks during the migration.

 

Yahoo Japan’s Overture Keyword Suggestion Tool stops updating stats

Yahoo's Keyword Tool
Who said the Overture Keyword Suggestion Tool was dead?

Yahoo’s Japan’s Overture Keyword Suggestion Tool has stopped updating stats finally it seems. Now I know quite a few of you are thinking this must be an old post or something that was just reposted from 2007. No it’s currently 2011 & Obama is the president of the USA. There has been actually several Keyword Suggestion Tools since the public & overused Overture Keyword Suggestion Tool vanished around 2007 but it seems no one writes about them.

The old Overture Keyword Suggestion Tool was pretty much a staple for too many marketing tools. If the tools were used for advertising that would have been fine but many of the softwares using the tool wasn’t geared towards paid search. It was used as an SEO tool and also benchmarks for domain stats.

 

In 2007 Yahoo launched the first new Keyword Suggestion Tool as they promised when they shut down the old one. Everyone was happy to hear that, business as usual right? Wrong. The first tool was agency only. Each person who used it had their own individual logins. Also there was never any press release on it. Agencies used it & kept quiet. Why not? This is the tool that finally is not being updated anymore.

 

So I know you’re wonder how do agencies get their data now? Well that tool to us was “So last year”. We already have a new tool by Yahoo! Japan. This tool also is schedule to be updated tremendously in Fall 2011. You want to know more about this tool?

Keep reading InternationalSEM.com from time to time I’ll tell you all about it.

Yahoo Japan’s New Keyword Advice Tool 2010

The Overture Keyword Tool was killed off more than 3 years ago. The tool’s data was used by online business owners, internet marketers, domainers, & just about everyone else who needed to know the search volume of their target keywords.  The tool’s data was also integrated into plenty of various business’ tools.

Even though the tool was used by so many, the ratio of Yahoo’s paid clients to users who used the data varied a lot. So Yahoo made a decision to kill the tool with the promise it would come back later. Well about a year later or so it did come back. Yahoo smartened up though. Yahoo realized that Agencies gave them most of their business revenue so they made the new tool available to Ad Agencies that ran Paid search campaigns. I think I’ve had access to the Yahoo Japan tool for more than 2 years now. This new tool was really accurate on impression volumes from the previous month & would give keyword ideas & traffic click estimates.

Going back to 2 months ago I was attending a Yahoo Japan seminar for Agency workers & they informed us about yet another Keyword Advice Tool coming soon. This tool finally debuted this month. Summing it up in one word: BRAVO!! These are the new features that are absolutely amazing & useful

1. Search Volume from previous month
2. PPC Competitor level
3. Estimates/Volume based on Exact Matches or Broad
4. Estimates for only Listed Keywords (Only Google’s Traffic Estimator does this & the numbers are way off)
5. Include related keywords
6. Daypart Data
7. Gender breakdown
8. Location Breakdown
9. Age Breakdown
10.  Day of the week breakdown

This new tool was made domestically by Yahoo Japan & really gives Ad Agency’s a clear advantage in the detail we can now research better keywords for our clients. I’ve told our Yahoo Reps that come to GroupM how much I love the tool already but this is a public Thank You.. You guys did a great job. I would imagine that next the tool will include Mobile data. I can’t see what else I could need after that.

Yahoo Japan Site Explorer back online

Only after a week Yahoo Japan Site Explorer is back online & out of maintenance mode. This is one of the possible reasons why Yahoo Japan has an argument with Yahoo Inc. (US). Their timing sucks. No other way of saying it. A week long maintenance of an important SEO tool, then it comes out of maintenance right at the beginning of the summer holiday. Hello we’re on vacation now & most people servicing their clients wanted to use the tool before the summer holiday.

Yahoo Japan knows this, we in Tokyo know this, it’s those who control the technology who sometimes don’t understand. During this time I had a chance to look over the US version & see it can accept mobile sitemaps. That’s cool. The Japanese version though is 100 IDN Domain compatible.

Yahoo Japan & Google after a week

Ok it’s not a week yet but I got a chance to meet up with Yahoo reps this week twice. Since my job is paid search we got a chance to ask our team of reps that come by the office “Ok so what’s going on”.

You can be assured that the systems Yahoo & Google use for advertising will be separate.

Most likely on the outside things will look the same but the core technology backend for Yahoo will change.

The products & services sold by Yahoo & Google will remain seperate.

What exactly will change is not to be determined yet. Mobile search which was mainly built in Japan also has the potential to use the Google technology.

For those of us in Digital & Search Marketing in Tokyo. Most of us love the Yahoo Japan guys. We like Google too, but everyone knows that Yahoo Japan has a great team of diligent hardworking ladies & men that really support agencies to the fullest.  With the companies both in Roppongi now people around town say that both teams might worry about each other selling the same product but the products & services offered are completely different. Google’s team can’t handle servicing the smaller & mid sized business’ in Japan. Yahoo Japan can. It’s just a fact.

What’s going on Yahoo?

I guess since announcing that Yahoo Japan is going to be moving over to Google’s search technology Yahoo US doesn’t have to be careful about maintenance planning & such. Immediately after the announcement from Tuesday afternoon Japan time until about Thursday morning we couldn’t see any new stats in Yahoo Search management’s interface. The system was still working we just couldn’t see how we were spending on client’s accounts. At the end of the month having this outage is just plain bad.

For the last two or three days Yahoo Japan’s Site Explorer is also in maintenance mode. Is it being updated, scrapped, are we wasting our time using it at all? It’s going to be rocky for companies this year. Technology, especially major technology platforms like this will certainly bring problems.

IDN Domains & technology compatibility

IDN Domains & technology compatibility
After reading the post on Outrider Australia’s Blog by Ian Lavelle about IDN Domains I decided to write a post about technology compatibility. His final quote made me realize many might think that these domains are not here yet, or that search technology is not already compatible.
http://www.outrider.com.au/blog/idns-and-the-potential-impact-on-search/
“Google Webmaster Tools and Analytics are two great resources for webmasters to track diagnostic issues and monitor user activity on your site, but whether Google opens their services up to non-latin character based websites remains to be seen.”
Below I have started to list a very good resource of what is compatible with these IDN Domains.
For those who haven’t heard your clients will next year be able to have full domains in written in language scripts other than latin based alphabet. For example full domains in Chinese, Japanese, Russian, Korean, and/or Arabic. This will start with ccTLDs (Country domains .cn, .jp, etc). I will use .jp as an example since I’m in Japan. Currently you can already register IDNs in dot jp. For example if I own ダイヤモンド.jp (Diamond.jp) when approved people in Japan will also be able to own .日本 (Japan). The registry in Japan has already announced registered holders of the “Domain.jp” will be the ones who have the option of the “Domain.日本” for the same domain.
Since .日本 is not yet available I can go through what is already IDN domain friendly & how far technology has gotten to. I have personally been testing these domains for more than 4 years already for SEO & marketing value.
A) Search Engines
The search engines are fairly familiar with these domains & have been adding IDN compatibility over the last several years.

Google
Search listings results show IDN domains already. Here is an example below. Keyword as an SEO factor in the domain is only an option for the Japanese market if the domain is in Japanese too. This is the same logic for Chinese, Korean, & Arabic etc.
If you search for the Domain plus extension there is a high possibility it will be the number one position in the search results. For example if a site ホノルル.jp & in English letters Honolulu.jp both have the brand in Japanese “ホノルル.jp”, if Japanese users search for the term exactly without quotes the IDN Domain only has to be indexed to beat out the Honolulu.jp because to a search engine “ホノルル” & Honolulu are as relevant as ホノルル & any other term in English.

Yahoo Japan
Yahoo Japan is also already IDN compatible. Yahoo Japan & other Yahoo sites already display IDN Domains natively in the search results. One difference between Yahoo & Google that I have found is if a user searches for the domain & extension with or without quotes it is currently guaranteed first place position in the search results. I have tested this & no amount of SEO or links can make another domain get a better ranking. On Google another domain ranking higher is possible but not on Yahoo.
Bing
Live.com’s search results weren’t IDN compatible. With the revamp of Bing the domains are now shown natively in the search results. If you search for a keyword plus domain it does not have a great chance of showing up in higher positions in Bing. There still needs to be more testing.

Baidu
Baidu does not show IDN Domain sites in native Unicode. It shows the domains in punycode. Even if you search for the domain plus domain extension it will most likely not show up in the search results. I also have only tried this from Tokyo.

Here is an example of the search results from Baidu.
Yandex (Russian)
The largest search engine from Russia seems to not be very IDN compatible as of yet. The domains don’t show in the results when searched for. If the domains show in the results they are in Punycode.
Daum (Korean Search)
The Korean search portal is already IDN compatible. By doing a search for a developed Korean IDN Domain without quotes Daum brought these results. This is in the middle of the page with the natural search listings. I have not tested Korea domains thoroughly.
Naver (Korean Search)Add an Image
Naver does not display the domains in Unicode & even searching for a domain with extension does not bring up a developed Korean domain. Here is one Korean IDN developed site I found in the search results.
B)   PAID SEARCH
Both Google Adwords & Yahoo Search Marketing can accept IDN in search ads. The Domain can not be displayed in Unicode yet. This is a paid search ad on Yahoo using an IDN Domain.

C)   MOBILE SEARCH
1. Google Mobile Japan
The search listings for Google Japan mobile are IDN domain compatible & results show domains names natively.. The algorithm for mobile search is also different from PC search listings. There is a possibility that the domain name may have more value as a factor in the mobile search results. There is not much of any published data on this as of yet. All non Softbank cell phones in Japan have Google Mobile as the default search engine.
2. Yahoo Japan Mobile
Unlike the PC search results for Yahoo, IDN domains show as punycode in the mobile search results. Domains are indexed correctly & do show in results.
D)   SEO TOOLS
1. Google Page Rank
Years ago IDN domains did not show Google page rank but currently IDN domains & Google page rank are compatible.
2. Google Webmaster tools
Google Webmaster Tools has been IDN compatible for a few years now. Domains can be used in native form.
3. Yahoo Search Explorer
Yahoo Search Explorer is also IDN compatible. This has been IDN compatible for a few years also.
4. Google Analytics
Google Analytics is IDN compatible. I have always put in the domain as punycode & named the profile with the Japanese domain name. There is only one current tracking issue. Browser stats show IE7 & IE8 as IE6. I have contacted Google about this issue. There is a code work around that I have yet to test.
This is just a really quick overview of tools we are all familiar with & their compatibility with these domains.

Yahoo Microsoft Deal for Japan & Korea

I’m glad that Yahoo & Microsoft have finally ironed out the search deal between the two companies. Yahoo will eventually switch to using Microsoft Technology for the search engine & Yahoo’s worldwide sales force will head sales for both Bing & Yahoo. Yahoo also is stating that Yahoo’s Panama system will be switched to Microsoft’s Adcenter.

I was asked a few time from individuals across the globe about when will Japan switch over to the Microsoft Adcenter platform. To say it frankly I have a better chance of becoming Japan’s top pop idol compare to Yahoo Japan switching over to Microsoft’s Ad Center.

Unlike other Yahoo corporations Yahoo Japan & Korea are totally seperate companies that actually dominate the market. The word from Yahoo Search Marketing reps is a switch won’t be happening. Microsoft’s Adcenter isn’t even tested in the Japanese market. Yahoo’s paid listings already power Bing. There would be no advantage at all for Yahoo Japan to switch to another technology platform out of their contol.

Korea is in the same situation. It becomes easier to understand the fustration that Yahoo goes through when suddenly developers in the US decide to do system updates in the middle of the nite US time but it’s still daytime here in Tokyo.

Long story short… They might switch technology but it won’t be to Microsoft’s technology for paid listings.

Microsoft Yahoo Deal & Japan

The announcement that Microsoft would purchase Yahoo search really had & still have people wondering. This might be great for the US but what about other markets that are trying to get away from US based owned technology? Japan, Hong Kong, & Korea for example?

Japan is actually trying hard to dump the US Panama system & develop their own system for contextualize ad serving. Why would they go to a Microsoft  Ad Platform which is even more unreliable, & completely untested in the Japanese market? These are the questions that I think are unanswered. Currently Yahoo Listing service (Formerly Overture) is already serving their ads on Microsoft search properties.

What is the benefit to Asia is something that is yet to have a clear cut answer.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Aenean commodo ligula eget dolor. Aenean massa. Cum sociis natoque penatibus et magnis dis parturient montes, nascetur ridiculus mus.

Donec quam felis, ultricies nec, pellentesque eu, pretium quis, sem. Nulla consequat massa quis enim. Donec pede justo, fringilla vel, aliquet nec, vulputate eget, arcu. In enim justo, rhoncus ut, imperdiet a, venenatis vitae, justo.

Nullam dictum felis eu pede mollis pretium. Integer tincidunt. Cras dapibus. Vivamus elementum semper nisi. Aenean vulputate eleifend tellus. Aenean leo ligula, porttitor eu, consequat vitae, eleifend ac, enim. Aliquam lorem ante, dapibus in, viverra quis, feugiat a, tellus. Phasellus viverra nulla ut metus varius laoreet. Quisque rutrum. Aenean imperdiet. Etiam ultricies