Yahoo Exits the “AdSense” Business

Yahoo announced on March 31st that it shutting down its Yahoo Publisher Network (YPN) effective April 30. According to a Yahoo bog post, the decision “does not affect large, direct publishers and partners, nor advertisers using Content Match.”  They go on to state:
Earlier today, Yahoo! emailed a small group of publishers participating in the Yahoo! Publisher Network self-service beta program (also known as “YPNO” or “Yahoo Publisher Network Online”), to inform them that we have decided to close the program effective April 30, 2010. This only affects our self-service platform for small publishers who syndicate our Content Match (contextual) listings.

This decision does not affect nor impact our relationship with large direct publishers and partners in any way. As Yahoo! CEO Carol Bartz has stated previously, our publisher (or affiliate) network is an important part of our business, and Yahoo! will continue to invest and innovate to ensure that our publishers realize the best value possible from our partnership.

Publishers participating in the self-service beta program displayed our advertisers’ Content Match ads (or text-based ads), but this made up only a small amount of total impression volume. Advertisers’ Content Match ads will continue to be displayed on our large, direct partners’ sites, as well as across relevant content on Yahoo! sites. Sponsored Search ads are not affected by this announcement at all.
Yahoo launched the program in 2005 as a competitor to Google’s Adsense program that lets small webmasters publisher syndicate pay-per-click ads on their web site. The service never developed good targeting technology, and early high payouts gradually declined.  At one point YPN ads were working on domains that Google had shut-out of their AdSense program because of duplicate content.   Early incarnations of WhyPark was one example, and their development of in-house ads kept domain owners from having to resort to YPN ads.  
Yahoo-based parking companies, such as Parked, WhyPark, and SmartName, will continue to monetize through Yahoo for now.   As the Yahoo-Microsoft deal comes together we may see Microsoft contributing ad inventory to these services.

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