Microsoft heavily invested to create useful tools for advertisers. On their tools page contextual ads are listed on the right for subjects related to "all the data mining", no doubt from a thin arbitrage site.
If Microsoft would just let me know what that ad placement cost is, I bet I would pay more for the ad placement than the thin arbitrage site. Although the value of keeping their tool pages free of ads, so that they can increase market penetration would be worth even more.
One of the ads on Microsoft's ad tools page offers to repair Microsoft products (which hints that Microsoft's stuff is broken), while another ad is marginally relevant and leads to a no value arbitrage domain (IndustrialProducts.com) which redirects to another site syndicating Yahoo ads.
Then when the user appears on the thin arbitrage site Microsoft is buying the click back to market their own products.
Let us appreciate this brilliance:
- paying advertisers to cheapen their brand and pollute their core product pages in important verticals with irrelevant spammy low (or no) value offers
- sending away more traffic than they get back
- losing money on the transaction
I have ranted about Yahoo! killing their keyword tool and doing nothing to rebrand or repair it, simply wasting thousands or millions of dollars worth of leads and marketshare each day. Disclaimer: my keyword tool just broke too, but I am trying to get it fixed ASAP. Yahoo! has other areas where they can offer you useful recommendations, but chose not to.
If you ever submit a site to the global Yahoo! Directory on the thank you page they recommend submitting your site to regional directories if your site is in multiple languages.
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