Microsoft-Yahoo Paid Search Alliance Beginning Testing and Integration In Europe

Yahoo-Microsoft Search AllianceAfter Microsoft’s search engine Bing, took over completely Yahoo organic search worldwide (except Korea) in October 2011, the companies are beginning the first experimental stages of the paid search (Microsoft adCenter) integration furthermore to the global arena, into the European market.

Starting Paid Search Testing In Europe

Microsoft has announced in adCenter official blog that Microsoft and Yahoo will begin experimenting with the transition of Microsoft’s advertising platform adCenter into Yahoo search results over its sites in the U.K., France and Ireland “as early as mid-January” (which is actually now) throughout the first half of the year.

The ad testing are planned to begin appearing in up to 10% of Yahoo’s overall search traffic in these selected European countries, when the purpose is to increase the rate gradually until a full transition of Microsoft adCenter into Yahoo UK, France and Ireland search results will be completed in the second quarter of 2012.

Microsoft is recommending current adCenter advertisers in these European markets to track their ad campaigns more than usual (“closely monitor”) as their budget will likely to run out faster and they will be required to add funds whenever less than 20% of the total budget will remain.

Breaking Google Paid Search Dominance In Europe?

Microsoft adCenter is already fully integrated in Yahoo north American sites (USA, Canada) and it just completed the transition in Yahoo India. Couple of months ago, representatives from both companies stated they are expecting a full transition of adCenter into Yahoo sites in Europe this year (as the process indeed began).

The Microsoft-Yahoo search alliance has a lot of work in order to compete effectively with Google in Europe- In a recent report from the SEO and search agency, Covario, Google paid search control on the EMEA market (Europe, the Middle East and Africa) in the fourth quarter of 2011 is almost absolute.

Paid Search Market Share Q4 2011 EMEA

In these regions of the world Google paid search is holding about 94% of the market and Yahoo-Bing holds almost insignificant share. There is a huge chunk of European paid search that left almost exclusively in the hands of Google’s. Does the search alliance will be a game changer for the European paid search industry? I don’t think so…

Although the Microsoft-Yahoo search alliance might help a bit to improve the companies advertising situation in those regions, the only way to really grab significant shares from those markets is to break the ORGANIC search monopoly Google has at first. After all, advertisers will always go to where the main flow is at and no search alliance will change that.