Search engine Yahoo has said that it is conducting tests using search results from Google. The move has come about following a recently concluded renegotiation with Microsoft. Until recently, Yahoo was reliant on the Microsoft-owned Bing search engine for its search results. Following conclusions of negotiations with Microsoft in April, Yahoo opened the door to the possibility of engaging with other partners for the purposes of search.
The renegotiated deal with Microsoft requires Yahoo to ensure that 51% of desktop search traffic has Bing ads carried on it. The remaining 49% of search traffic can carry whatever ads Yahoo likes, using either its own Gemini system or ads from other partners.
Yahoo has said that the update allows it to be more agile and have a greater sales focus.
The use of search results from Google would indicate that Yahoo has signed non-exclusive deals with Google. An alternative explanation is that such a deal is being tested for now before Yahoo signs up fully. In any event, it does seem clear that Silicon Valley-based Yahoo is examining whether having a mix of partners for search results or search ad placement on its website properties would benefit it and its users.
The search partnership deal between Yahoo and Microsoft was rolled out in 2010, and the intention at that time was that it would remain in place for ten years. However, Yahoo was given the option to walk away from the deal at its midpoint if certain revenue conditions agreed on between it and Microsoft had not been met. Marissa Mayer, Yahoo’s chief executive, had repeatedly expressed her dissatisfaction in that respect.
Projections from research firm eMarketer point to a combined share of the global search market of 6.5% between Yahoo and Microsoft in 2015. The global leader in search, Google, was projected to enjoy a 54.5% of the market in 2015, according to eMarketer.
An official statement released by Yahoo read: “As we work to create the absolute best experiences for Yahoo users, from time to time, we run small tests with a variety of partners including search providers. There is nothing further to share at this time.”