The Critical First Second & The Area of Greatest Promise

Last week on Just Behave, I talked about the importance of consideration sets in search; how we tend to slice off three or four top listings in our consideration set at the beginning of our interaction with the search results page. Today I want to talk about another concept, no less important, that looks at the very first second of interaction with the search results page. I've referred to it in the past as the Area of Greatest Promise. Start High and To the Left, Work down from There As I mentioned last week, there is an almost universal behavior amongst North Americans when they intera [...]

Yahoo Quick Links: The Official Word

Yahoo Quick Links are little links found beneath some of the search results at Yahoo Search. As an example, a search on barry schwartz at Yahoo Search brings up a Wikipedia entry for the other Barry Schwartz with Quick Links; it looks like this: I have been covering Yahoo Quick Links for a while and got some official answers from Yahoo about how they work. In short, Yahoo Quick Links can happen through both natural and paid means. Buying Yahoo Quick Links Yes, you can buy Quick Links for your listings. Yahoo told me "clients participating in Search Submit Pro can submit their Quick Lin [...]

Yahoo Removes Directory Links From Individual Search Results

Yahoo Removes Category (Directory) Links From Under Search Results at Search Engine Roundtable reports that Yahoo has removed the links from the individual search listings to the Yahoo Directory. In the past, if a page had a listing in the Yahoo Directory, that directory listing would be shown as part of the page's listing in web search results. Here is a before and after that illustrates this: Before: After: This seems to be a pretty big move from Yahoo. This is just one more step in the direction of folding the once very popular Yahoo Directory. Postscript: Search Engine Watch has c [...]

Scanning Consideration Sets And Their Importance To Search Marketers

As humans, we have a limited capacity to consider our alternatives. Within our brains, there is a limited amount of shelf space available for us to temporarily put our options on to examine them and make our decision. We have cognitive limits to the amount of information we can process at any given time. When it comes to memory capacity, it seems that the limit for humans is seven, plus or minus two. This comes from a 1956 paper by cognitive psychologist George A. Miller called The Magical Number Seven, Plus or Minus Two. He referred to it as channel capacity, the number of cognitive an [...]

Searching For Super Bowl XLI

The Super Bowl is known by advertisers as one of the biggest marketing events of the year, but do search ads play a part of that? Reprise Media released this years Super Bowl Search Marketing Scorecard that explains that although there were improvements from last year, this year was still lacking in terms of integrating their offline and online ad efforts. The study also claims that marketers used poor call-to-actions in their ads and lacked in driving users to interact with their brands online. So how did each advertiser rate? The PDF score card puts, Snickers and GoDaddy [...]

Exclusive Interview: Larry Cornett, Yahoo Director Of User Experience Design

This week I caught up with Larry Cornett, the relatively new Director of User Experience Design at Yahoo and Kathryn Kelly, Director of PR for Yahoo! Search. Again, to set the stage for the interview, here are some high level findings from our eye tracking study that I'll be discussing in more detail with Larry and Kathryn. Emphasis on Top Sponsored Results In the study we found Yahoo emphasized the top sponsored results more than either Microsoft or Google. They showed top sponsored results for more searches and devoted more real estate to them. This had the effect of giving Yahoo! the [...]

Search Engines’ Test Beds

In Search of... Better Ways to Search at the Wall Street Journal goes through the different ways search engines like Google, Yahoo, Microsoft and use "spin off" sites to test new features. We have reported about all these in the past, but the article offers a nice overview of many of the methods search engines test features. Google's Test Site: Yahoo's Test Sites: AllTheWeb and AltaVista Microsoft's Test Site: Ms Dewey's Test Site: Ask X The search engines also constantly test out new features to a subset of their users on their main sites. [...]

Will Paid Search Conquer The Mobile Internet?

To say there's a lot going on with mobile right now is to state something more than obvious. The carriers, the handset makers and the mobile content providers are in what amounts to a frenzy of competition and business development as they try and position themselves for what they see as the next really big opportunity: the mobile Internet. Two articles that simultaneously appeared in the Wall Street Journal (subscription required) yesterday capture this mood and activity. The first article, "Companies Vie For Ad Dollars On Mobile Web," was a broad survey of the state of the mobile marketplac [...]

Google Copies Yahoo’s IE7 Page; Originality War Breaks Out!

Google Blatantly Copies Yahoo!? from Yahoo's Jeremy Zawodny makes a pretty damning case against Google for blatantly ripping off Yahoo's Internet Explorer 7 promo copy. Yahoo offers a custom version of IE7 via a pitch page you'll see here. Google appears to have launched its own pitch page yesterday, one that was amazingly similar in look and feel to Yahoo's. Jeremy has the side-by-side photos of how the pages looked. Google's page has since changed. In many places, the copy was either identical or the word Yahoo was simply swapped for Google. At best, I thought perhaps Google was using some [...]

Yahoo Adds “More” DHTML Button On Search Results Page

Yahoo added a "more" button that seems to be a DHTML or CSS contextual drop down menu with more search options to the inner search pages. So if you do a search on gary price at Yahoo Search (he tipped me off to this), you will notice next to the options above the search box is a more link with an arrow down. Clicking on that gives you more search options, here is a picture. [...]

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