For Yahoo, the Focus is the Fees


In a move aimed at pointing more of its users towards activities and sites
that generate revenue, Internet portal Yahoo is said to be testing a redesigned
front page that puts more emphasis on fee-based services and opens up a
little more space for advertisers.


Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Yahoo! , which for 18 months has
been signing deals like the recent
one that created Yahoo Advice
in order to increase its fee-based
revenues, also is redesigning its shopping and e-mail features, according to
a Wall Street Journal report. E-mail became a
revenue stream
last March.


Almost as proof of the pudding, Yahoo today announced that its auto section will soon begin offering
auto dealers improved packages of online automotive classified listings for
purchase through value-added resellers.


What Yahoo reportedly wants to do is to prepare its home page and other sites
for eventually targeting its visitors, providing personalized product offers
and brand marketing, along the lines of what Seattle-based e-commerce
bellwether Amazon.com does.


There’s a reason, of course. Yahoo! for the past 18 months or so has been
attempting to find alternative revenue sources as Internet advertising has
slumped. For the first quarter of 2002, revenues totaled $192.7 million —
above analysts’ expected $186 million. But on the bottom line, Yahoo! posted
its sixth-straight quarterly net loss — $53.6 million, or 9 cents per share.

Yahoo reportedly will roll out test versions of various new looks to some
users for two weeks before it releases the new redesigns to its entire
audience near the end of June.


For the auto deal, Yahoo said its first dealer listings packages will be
available to the 3,000 franchises that participate in AutoNation Inc.’s AutoVantage eDealership Network.


“Yahoo! Autos’ dealer listings packages allow dealers to market their vehicle
inventory directly to in-market shoppers and secure leads at very competitive
prices,” said Elizabeth Blair, senior vice president of Yahoo!’s Listings
business unit.

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