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Will Pending Layoffs Put Final Nail In Yahoo Search?
Whatever is left of Yahoo Search — and, frankly, that’s unclear at this point — might be gone completely within the next couple of weeks.
At AllThingsD today, Kara Swisher is reporting that Yahoo is planning substantial layoffs as early as next week, with a company restructuring to be revealed the week after that. Swisher, who’s been correct on things like this in the past, mentions “a half-dozen sources” in reporting on Yahoo’s impending plans.
Of note for Search Engine Land readers is the discussion of what might happen to Yahoo Search. AllThingsD says that Yahoo has been in talks with both Google and Microsoft.
“[Yahoo CEO Scott] Thompson and others are still trying to figure out how to dispense with its ad technology org and, potentially, its search business. He has been in discussions with both Microsoft and Google about this, although there are other possibilities, too.”
One of those “other possibilities” appears to be Yahoo holding on to at least some of its search business, which AllThingsD says could be rolled into a “global media” division with Yahoo’s communications business.
Yahoo got out of the core search business when it outsourced its search results to Bing in August 2010. That 10-year agreement calls for Bing to power Yahoo’s search results and Microsoft’s adCenter to handle self-service search ads (while Yahoo continued to service “premium” advertisers).
Former Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz promised that Yahoo would “continue to innovate” on the user interface/experience side. While there have been a few changes here and there, Yahoo’s share of the U.S. search market has been sliding consistently.
So, while my headline asks if the final nail could soon hit the Yahoo search coffin, I’m sure Danny Sullivan would argue that it already happened three years ago.