By now you’ve already hear that Microsoft has made an incredible bid of $45 billion to pick up Yahoo. Some call it an offer Yahoo can’t refuse, but what does it mean for your business online?
While in general monopolies have never proven to be great for the little guys, a combined Yahoo-Microsoft effort would either produce a viable competitor to the Goog or continue a tailspin of diminishing relevance, leaving Google the #1 search engine by default, not choice. With Google already enforcing strict policies about paid links and essentially defining how thousands of webmasters develop their sites, the latter situation would create a hazardous environment for business owners who have desires for their sites that at odds with Google’s policies.
Now to Google’s credit, their standards for websites are generally pretty good ones — build sites for users, avoid using duplicate content, have a reliable site, etc. However, what checks and balances will there be if the organic search world is a one-company show? Especially as Google stretches its fingers into acquiring information and media properties, the neutrality of this web behemoth is going to become ever more a subject of scrutiny… and legitimate concern.
On the other hand, even a more influential Google will have to contend with the emerging power of social networks, which is exactly where a Microsoft-Yahoo would be strong. The savvy website owner — that is, you — will be wise to keep working on a site which drives in diverse sources of traffic, and answers all of the questions your customers typically have. Though it’s also not a bad idea to make an appearance in social media circles!
Well all know that technology changes will abruptly alter how we approach web marketing, and though the tactics will differ depending on how organic search companies butt heads, the bottom line will always be reaching your customers. Keep speaking the message your customers want to hear — no matter the medium — and success will follow you.