by Mariella Moon
Now that Yahoo and Microsoft are not exclusive anymore — when it comes to search, that is — they can both work with other companies. In fact, according to The New York Times, Mayer and her team have already started testing Google search ads in a small number of desktop and mobile queries. It was first discovered by SEOBook’s Aaron Wall, who alternately saw Yahoo results with Bing ads and ones with Google ads when he used different browsers. Both of them have confirmed the arrangement to NYT but wouldn’t discuss the partnership in detail. “As we work to create the absolute best experiences for Yahoo users, from time to time, we run small tests with a variety of partners including search providers,” was all the company said.
Yahoo and Microsoft revised their 10-year partnership in April: Bing used to provide Yahoo’s search results and ads exclusively. Now, the former has the right to enlist the help of other providers for up to 49 percent of its search results. The two could completelybreak up by October, as well, though it’s clear Yahoo’s still testing the waters before deciding. Google wanted to provide search ads for Yahoo way back in 2008, but that deal was nipped in the bud by the Justice Department. DOJ’s antitrust division believed the agreement could deny “consumers the benefits of competition,” so Google walked away. It’s unclear if they’ve already cleared things up with the agency this time, but the DOJ hasn’t issued an official statement about this potential partnership yet.