The ROI team recently attended a Yahoo Search Marketing(YSM!) workshop in Alexandria, VA. The conference was extremely helpful in gaining new insight on creative ways to manage and optimize campaigns. The presenter, Heather Lutze, did a fantastic job balancing Yahoo’s affiliation with the workshop and relating the knowledge to all PPC campaigns.
We were ecstatic when Heather announced that after the lunch break we would get a glimpse of the new Yahoo advertising interface known as “Project Panama.” As all of us know this project has taken longer than foreseen, but after the brief slide show outlining the interface I believe it is safe to say that it will be worth the wait.
The major enhancements and features include:
- Ad testing- A/B splits will now be possible. Finally! You will also have the option to “rotate ads evenly” or “show the better performer.”
- Quality Index Component- YSM will no longer be a 100% bid based auction. Your position will be based on quality index, click through rate, and bid.
- Geo-Targeting feature- Country/City options similar to Google’s feature.
- Fast Ad Activation- Improved timeliness of your ad text giving you more flexibility. No more 3 day delays in ad approval!
- Improved Forecasting- You will be able to calculate estimated clicks at a certain budget.
- Dynamic Keyword Insertion. Personally I was most excited about this option as it will drastically cut down on time it takes to insert UTM Tags into the URL’s.
- You will have the option to easily import campaigns from your desktop.
- Display URL’s
- The ability to re-submit declined keywords and listings from the editorial status page.
I couldn’t help but think many of the changes and enhancements were similar to the set-up within Google AdWords. There is heavy speculation on whether or not the option to view your competitor’s bids will still exist. My opinion is that if quality score and click through rate are now a factor in determining your position then the bid visibility option will no longer be needed.
I am crossing my fingers that with the launch of Project Panama they will also add a client center making it easier for agencies to link accounts. Currently, you can merge accounts but this is irreversible.
The “Panama Project” was set to be implemented in May, when Yahoo announced they needed to do more testing before it was taken live. Although this is all speculation, the latest announcement is that they plan on rolling out the enhancements anywhere from late fall to early spring.