Feeds

AltaVista to sell search result positioning

But paying for keywords will increase the results' relevance, honest...

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Intelligent flash storage arrays

AltaVista is to become the first major Web search outfit to allow companies to pay to have their site displayed prominently in search results. Smaller outfits do this sort of thing already, and cynics might be suspicious of certain larger outfits, but AltaVista is the first to grasp the nettle firmly. And, depending on reactions out there, to shove it straight up its corporate nose. The AltaVista scheme could start as early as Monday, and is being promoted by Web ad operation DoubleClick, which is soliciting business with the message: "When users perform keyword searches on AltaVista, what is the first listing they see? Now it can be your company's listing." The conditions under which it really is your company's name aren't entirely clear, but the programme is starting out with around 500 initial keywords, and AltaVista is going to have the thorny problem of keeping search results looking honest and relevant while at the same time satisfying the companies who're paying money to... well, to what? Search results are of course fixed to some extent anyway, outfits that use the same keyword multiple times in order to increase 'relevance' being just one example. But that's something search outfits should surely be trying to edit out of their results, in order to improve the service they're offering. Taking money for positioning could in that sense be seen as a move in the opposite direction. AltaVista says the new 'service' will actually be making results more relevant, but it's going to have to figure out how just adding money can make this the case. At the moment it seems AltaVista envisages adding in merchant sites that are relevant, so think of a concept, then think of things associated with that concept that people would like to sell you, and presumably those are the sites you get. Try "a host of golden daffodils" and you'll no doubt get five garden centres before Wordsworth. ®

Remote control for virtualized desktops

More from The Register

next story
Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012
Thanks for the £3k, Zuck. Doh! you're IN CREDIT. Guess not
Google Glassholes are UNDATEABLE – HP exec
You need an emotional connection, says touchy-feely MD... We can do that
Lawyers mobilise angry mob against Apple over alleged 2011 Macbook Pro crapness
We suffered 'random bouts of graphical distortion' - fanbois
Just don't blame Bono! Apple iTunes music sales PLUMMET
Cupertino revenue hit by cheapo downloads, says report
US court SHUTS DOWN 'scammers posing as Microsoft, Facebook support staff'
Netizens allegedly duped into paying for bogus tech advice
Feds seek potential 'second Snowden' gov doc leaker – report
Hang on, Ed wasn't here when we compiled THIS document
Verizon bankrolls tech news site, bans tech's biggest stories
No agenda here. Just don't ever mention Net neutrality or spying, ok?
Inside the EYE of the TORnado: From Navy spooks to Silk Road
It's hard enough to peel the onion, are you hard enough to eat the core?
prev story

Whitepapers

Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
Internet Security Threat Report 2014
An overview and analysis of the year in global threat activity: identify, analyze, and provide commentary on emerging trends in the dynamic threat landscape.