Yahoo has announced that their paid inclusion program will cease at the end of this year. Partners were informed yesterday (such as here and here), and a Yahoo representative confirmed the move on a panel discussion moderated by Search Engine Land Editor-in-Chief Danny Sullivan at the iProspect/Range Online Media Client Summit today. We’ve also received a statement from Yahoo, which is posted below.
Yahoo wasn’t sure how they would handle paid inclusion when asked on the Yahoo/Microsoft press conference a few months back. Historically, there has been a lot of controversy over paid inclusion. Accepting money to be included in a free, unbiased, organic search index is a bit “hypocritical,” as former Ask.com CEO Jim Lanzone would say.
If you try to access Yahoo’s paid inclusion sales page you are redirected to advertising.yahoo.com. Both the “Search Submit Basic” program that charged an annual fee per URL and the “Search Submit Pro” cost-per-click program will end as of Dec. 31, 2009.
Yahoo has sent us a statement on this change:
We are committing our resources and efforts to our core areas of focus, including improving the search experience and relevancy of our ads to increase user engagement and ROI for advertisers, and as a result, have decided to exit Search Submit. We have stepped up innovation in Search Marketing, recently rolling out search retargeting, Rich Ads in Search and improved matching technology, and in Consumer Search, with enhancements like the new search results page. These enhancements deliver value, control, innovation and relevance to our advertisers, leading to increased ROI.
Yahoo! will exit Search Submit at the end of 2009. Yahoo! is providing those advertisers affected by the decision a sufficient lead time to assist in the transition. In addition, Yahoo! has recently announced a series of important enhancements to its Search advertising business and will work closely with many Search Submit advertisers to provide them with search solutions that will benefit their businesses.