Yahoo Takes Control Of Its Mobile Search Ads

Hidden in Yahoo's earnings call, CEO Marissa Mayer told analysts that for the first time since 2010, the company is serving its own mobile search ads in the United States. It's one of several insights search marketers will learn this earnings season. Quarterly reports began surfacing this week. Many highlight interesting trends in mobile.

Yahoo's marketplace, Gemini, now represents 50% of Yahoo's mobile display revenue in the U.S. "I am also excited to report that our mobile display and our mobile search revenue each grew more than 100% year-over-year," she told analysts during the company's Q2 2014 earnings call. "In Q2, we continue to iterate on our search experience, servicing relevant information like event invitations, upcoming flights, packaged tracking data and more into the search experience."

Recently, Microsoft GM Search Advertising David Pann told Search Marketing Daily that revenue per share RPS growth hit double digits this year, much better numbers than the company has seen in the past four years. Guaranteeing revenue remains one reason Yahoo initially extended its search deal with Microsoft, we hear.

Google also plans to report 2Q 2014 earnings after the close of trading on Thursday, July 17. RBC Capital Market Analyst Mark Mahaney expects Google's net revenue to come in at $12.39 billion. Looking back at Q1 to analyze possible results in Q2, the analyst mentions in a research note seeing a reversal of paid click growth in Q1, with year over year clicks falling 26%.

He believes this trend will likely continue near term. "We anticipate a Q/Q margin increase in Q2 to 42%, partially due to Google's seasonal opex ramp-up. 3. Google organic revenue growth Organic revenue growth (ex-FX, ex-hedging) over 20% for the past 17 quarters, an impressive track record for a company on a $60B+ run rate, though our estimates imply a 19% Y/Y organic growth in Q2," he wrote.

Mobile ads continue to increase search traffic among 3Q Digital clients, too. Search market share rose 12% to 23.37% in Q2, sequentially. Mobile click-through rates among the company's clients rose 7.85%, while tablet and desktop CTRs remained static. The cost per click for mobile CPC and budgets rose 20.31% and 24.08%, respectively, without similar improvements in conversion rate, SearchBlog hears.

3Q Digital also ran numbers for product listing ads (PLA) campaigns. Together with search, the numbers among its clients reached nearly 280 million impressions, but increased competition continues to drive up prices for 3Q clients. The company found that the CPCs for Google's PLAs rose 23.1%, sequentially, in Q2, from .50 to .62. Conversion rates fell for PLAs from 3.01% to 2.91%, resulting in a 27.7% rise in PLA CPAs.

In a Webinar early Wednesday, Kenshoo reported client advertisers spent 25% more on paid search campaigns in Q2 2014, compared with the year-ago quarter. Impressions and clicks rose 15% year on year, with click-through rates jumping 26% compared with the prior year, though CPCs rose 8%. Mobile search campaigns CPCs rose on device desktops $0.73; mobile, $0.57; and tablets, $0.61. The company has a broad view with 22 international locations supported by 400 employees.

San Diego-based Covario also released numbers Tuesday. Among its clients, mobile search advertising contributed 25% to total global search investments during the second quarter in 2014. The gap between ad spend on mobile devices continues to narrow, with 38% of Q2 budgets going toward smartphones and 62% to tablets. Marketers gave 75% to desktop, 15% to tablets and 10% to smartphones. MediaPost hears the cost per click, and click-through rates flattened, among Covario's clients. Overall, CPC prices rose 0.7% year-on-year and fell 6% sequentially. CPCs remain largely discounted to desktop clicks with mobile CTRs down 43% in Q2.

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