SEM Heating Up

Barry Schwartz at SEW pointed to an item on the Google Blog on Monday that announced Google’s plans to integrate AdWords with Google Base. We speculated on this possibility in the Nov. 3, 2005, issue of Local Media Journal (after Google Base launched).

The gist is that anyone who publishes information or classifieds to Google Base can now bid on keywords via AdWords to drive traffic to listings. It is partly a strategy to create more AdWords advertisers; the same strategy behind Google’s partnership with Verizon SuperPages announced at TKG’s Drilling Down on Local Conference in March; and that of its free Web site creation and hosting tool Page Creator (to bring small businesses online for free, where they are then hoped to evolve into AdWords customers).

These moves are all significant for Google to protect its leading share of the SEM market. This is especially relevant now that its closest competitors in paid search, Yahoo! and MSN, have each launched new SEM platforms and enhancements within the past 14 days, explained here and here.

Needless to say, the paid search space is heating up as Yahoo! and Microsoft make moves to gain ground on Google. There is also a great deal of overall growth expected of the industry that each of the above players will try to position itself to capture. Stay tuned for a client advisory due out later this week, which will dig deeper into all of the above.

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