Last week, the CEO denied rumours that the company – whose stocks were lower at the close of business last Tuesday than they were at the beginning of the year – is considering merging with AOL. Instead she claimed that Yahoo is focused on the future, and that many of the issues the company faces are image based, and only a problem for technological and financial centres.
She said the average user, outside of Silicon Valley and New York, knew what the company stood for, and that part of her role was to educate people that the company is not a Google, it is a Yahoo.
A spokesperson for SEO company Queryclick.com (http://uk.queryclick.com/) commended Bartz for her stance, and suggested this was the right way for her to approach the criticism. They said: “Yahoo has been in what looks like a difficult position for a long time, but much of this is related to how well the company performs in comparison to Google.
“If you take the Mountain View giant out of the equation, you see a company that still has a lot of things going for it; brand loyalty, a search partnership with Bing and a lot of valuable user data.”
It could be these three areas that will see the company drag up its market value and re-establish its place among the big boys of the online world.
In the wake of the news that Facebook will launch its own alternative to email, Bartz also hit out at those questioning Yahoo’s ability to stay relevant in the face of the continuing online revolution. Speaking at the Web 2.0 Summit in San Francisco, Bartz claimed that rather than simply follow in Facebook’s targeted-ad-footsteps – as while Yahoo has a lot of user data, it is not aggregated in the same way – Yahoo would be concentrating on making sure publishers were able to offer users the right kind of content.
She suggested Yahoo would be in a good position to do this, as the company has traditionally collected data from each property in separate silos and is now looking at ways to consolidate.
In reaction to the fact that Yahoo has just introduced a new range of features, Queryclick speculated that the company was keener to compete with Google and Facebook than it claimed: “It looks as though Yahoo is busy picking and choosing the features that are proving most popular with the biggest search and social companies at the moment.
“The introduction of Yahoo Local Offers looks like a direct response to the popularity of Facebook Deals, Four-square Deals and Google Places. This cherry picking could be a good way to go for the company, but with Bing behind it, it makes sense for the brand to trade on its former reputation and continue to focus some energy on search. After all, the amount of people searching and investing in search engine optimisation (http://uk.queryclick.com/search-engine-optimisation-seo/) shows it’s a sector that’s constantly changing, but always staying relevant.”