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Will this Microsoft/Yahoo! merger ever happen, and what it can mean for you.?

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So with all the focus on the deteriorating financial markets it seems that the biggest deal in history has slowly but silently fallen off the radar. Microsoft’s play for Yahoo! is still going strong and believe it or not it looks like it very well may happen.

Yahoo has spent the last month trying everything it can to poison the deal, make alliances with other companies or try to get Microsoft to sweeten the pot but to Microsoft’s credit it has yet to blink.

While most articles talk about the synergies or lack thereof that the merger will produce I wanted to quickly highlight some points that will be beneficial to online marketers, publishers, and advertisers.

  1. Better click through percentages in Paid Search – Yahoo! generally has better conversion rates than Google does even though Google supplies most of the traffic. I think a combined Yahoo!/Microsoft team in this highly competitive market will give Google a run for its money. Microsoft has spent a lot of resources on developing some really great analytics for its adcenter network and this should pay off
  2. More advertising revenue – Yes, I know if you combine both companies this becomes an obvious thing but theres more to it than just the combined revenue that is already there. With better visibility, greater market share, and the ability to reach a much wider audience through both Yahoo!s and Microsoft’s web properties they combined company can stand to earn top dollar for premium placements.
  3. Let their be Search – In search Google is obviously king. While Yahoo has been developing a better search component for a long time now there hasn’t been anything of great substance that has come out. With a combined Yahoo!/Microsoft team they can devote better resources to develop on the Live Search system that Microsoft has spent tremendous resources to build. While its still not as good as Google, the potential is their to make it a great alternative.
  4. Why its good for Online Marketers- If your currently doing SEO, SEM, or any other type of online optimization and marketing you currently have to optimize first for Google and then worry about the rest. With a combined Yahoo!/Microsoft you may have a little more work ahead of you as you may have to actually optimize for both Search Engines but the pay offs for your clients should be much greater.
  5. Video, Social Media, and More – Both Yahoo!& Microsoft have been playing catch up in the world of Social Media, and Multimedia. While both of them have made significant strides they are not the leaders in any of these fields. Google got a break when it bought Youtube. What these companies need to do is take the best of breed from both of them, combine them, and make them better. Yahoo’s Buzz is one example of late to the game but getting it right. Initial stats show impressive traffic to sites that have had articles pop up on the front page.

Every point I have made of course depends on a combined, efficient, culture friendly company forming. While some things will come to fruition very early, as a combined company they will have some real growing pains. If they can overcome these all I have to say is watch out Google.