Yahoo Still Has A Way To Go Before Overcoming Google

If choice is good, then genuine competition is grand. Yahoo took a lot of heat in 2006, so let’s hope in 2007 that the company can rebound and become a bigger player than ever before in the landscapes of search, marketing, and online services.

Why? Because when true competition exists, then the consumer always wins. If Google and Yahoo become locked in a heated battle to provide the most comprehensive online experience for the user, the pace of innovation and user-friendliness increases exponentially. That’s something we all should want, it’s the fundamental principal that drives the free market.

Or as Austin Powers would say, “Groovy! Smashing! Yay Capitalism!”

OK. Choice is good. Yahoo had the chance to be top dog and blew it. Now it’s Google. Traditionally, companies that pass up an opportunity to be the best because they are the best fall into second place – or sometimes oblivion (Netscape) – and relegate themselves to that location for eternity. It’s hard to overcome the leader when the leader offered you the product that you refused then turned around and used it against you. Equally so if they just go ahead and ram your head in it without asking – kind of like what Microsoft did to Big Blue.

Yahoo has a ways to go to be a real competitor with Google. Frankly, we think Ask.com has a better chance simply because the management of Ask is willing to look at new ideas. Instead of resting on Jeeves’ laurels, the company asked the old gent to retire. That took some huevos.

Ask, too, has a way to go before it overcomes any of the Big 3, but at least it is moving in the right direction. The company has started some television and radio advertising. All the search engines, in fact, are getting in on that game. The question remains to be seen who will lead the search engines ten years from now, or even at the end of this year. Chances are it won’t be Yahoo. It may, or may not be, Ask. Ten years from now, it could be someone not playing the game today. At the end of this year, it will likely still be Google. But Google does have one problem it needs to fix: It’s duplicate content policy is just a tad bit too strict. Otherwise, they’re on top for a reason.

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