GeoCities Given Pink Slip by Yahoo

The new Yahoo story continues to evolve on what seems a daily basis. No longer a business fantasy land of oddball executive titles (Chief Yahoo) and “if it yahoo-logofeels good do it” business planning, TechCrunch reports that Yahoo has quietly announced it is shuttering GeoCities by the end of this year.

Yahoo purchased the free hosting service during the last century (I’ve been wanting to write that for some reason) for $2.87 billion. That was 1999 dollars. If you follow the comment stream at TechCrunch there is a fair amount of nostalgia surrounding this end of an era. The end of an era, however, may be the start of another for Yahoo. Rather than letting the service eat up resources at a time where saving money is as important as generating it, Yahoo is making real world business decisions based on, gulp, reality. For a dose of facts and figures to make a business decision on these certainly helped the Yahoo team pull the plug.

Go Ahead & Try Google’s New Product Search on Your iPhone; It Sucks!

Google has updated your smartphone shopping experience by adding Google Product Search results for iPhone and Android users.

…when you type a product query on Google.com in your iPhone or Android browser, you’ll get Google Product Search results nicely formatted for your phone. You can see online ratings, reviews, prices, and product details if you’re out and about, or just do some mobile web surfing from your couch.

Just in case the simplicity of this announcement escapes you, Rob here, will explain how it works:

Well, thanks Rob! But I have a question for you? Why did you search “bluetooth headset” and not the actual model you had picked up in the store? What’s that you say? Because when you search for an actual product model, say “motorola h710,” from your iPhone, NO product search results show up?

FeedBurner Makes the Jump to the Google Mothership

It’s been slowly coming for a very long time. Google announced that they’d acquired FeedBurner back in May 2007. Only eleven months later (*eye roll*), in April 2008, the two finally began their integration. And now it’s complete.

Last night, FeedBurner was the same website. Today, feedburner.com redirects (with masking) to google.com and www.feedburner.com gives the Google login:

googleburner

Once you sign in, however, you find the old FeedBurner layout. If you’re a FeedBurner user, you’ve probably seen the promptings to migrate your feeds to Google. As the above screenshot assures you, there’s still time. In fact, the front-page–only change may just be a ploy to reluctant or lazy users to migrate faster.

Have you seen this change?

MySpace Founder Steps Down; Former Facebook Exec to Take Over?

Despite once being Rupert Murdoch’s golden boy, it appears MySpace founder and CEO Chris DeWolfe has fallen out of favor. News Corp has announced that DeWolfe will be stepping down "in the near future" and will be left with a role on the board of MySpace China and perhaps some other adviser role.

There’s no announcement about who will take over from DeWolfe, but that’s not stopping AllThingsD from speculating former Facebook COO Owen Van Natta will get the job.

And really, that says it all. MySpace was once the hottest social network on the planet, then Facebook had the audacity to open its network up to everyone. Say what you want about the numerous interface changes at Facebook, but it appears the MySpace rival is gaining audience simply because it doesn’t allow you to set up pages with flashing backgrounds and tacky MP3′s that auto-load.

Click Fraud Rate Drops 20%, But Gets More Sophisticated

When your business relies on an increasing trend in click fraud, what do you do when the bottom drops out of the numbers?

That’s the predicament facing Click Forensics as its fourth year of providing its Click Fraud Index shows a dramatic drop in the average industry click fraud rate. The fourth quarter of 2008 was all gloom and doom, with the rate climbing to 17.1%, but the first quarter shows a drop to 13.8%–that’s about a 20% decline.

Never fear, there’s bottom line to protect, so Click Forensics gets granular and explains that while overall click fraud may have dropped, what’s there is getting more sophisticated.

pubCenter Open for Business

Microsoft is rolling out its answer to Google’s AdSense and the Yahoo Publisher Network with its new pubCenter beta. It is open to all and publishers can microsoft_advertisingsign up for free at the pubCenter site reports cnet.

Microsoft’s offering provides another option for publishers looking to monetize their content. Here are the highlights from the pubCenter site

The Microsoft pubCenterBeta offers you the chance to include advertising from one of the leading online advertising networks on your web site. With the pubCenterBeta you can:

  • Place ads on your web site—realizing revenue potential with relevant ads targeted to your audience.
  • Customize ads to the look and feel of your web site.
  • Gain access to one of the largest advertising networks, delivering high-quality ads.

Win Copies of Steven Woods’ “Digital Body Language” Book

Can you believe it’s been more than a month since we held our last book prize giveaway? Let’s rectify that immediately and give away 3 copies of Steve Woods’ Digital Body Language.

I’m a big believer in targeting your marketing campaigns–especially search marketing–to the different stages of your customer’s buying cycle. I tend to break it down to 3 basic steps: awareness, research, and purchase. Little did I know that I should really look a lot deeper and consider the digital “body language” of my target customer.

That’s where Woods comes in. His book helps you understand not just the buying cycle, but how to profile your customers, how to nurture your relationship with them, and how to measure the effectiveness of your efforts.