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Microsoft does paid-for searches

Goes after Google and Yahoo!

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Advertisers will be able to buy keywords on MSN's search page soon with the launch of MSN adCenter.

The service will be unveiled later today by Yusuf Mehdi, VP of MSN Information Services and Merchant Platform division, at MSN's customer summit in Redmond.

The service is likely to be similar to that offered by Google and Yahoo! - advertisers pay so their adverts appear when a surfer searches for a particular word. MS claims the system will include detailed audience information such as location, gender, age group and lifestyle segment. MS believes this will allow advertisers to improve advertising strategy and improve click-through rates.

The service will be trialled in France and Singapore for six months before any wider rollout.

Microsoft will continue to work with Yahoo! Search Marketing, formerly Overture, which provides MSN with its current paid-for-search system.

Search Engine Watch has more analysis on the likely impact of Yahoo! and Google here.

More details on Microsoft's site here

In other news MSN has started experiments with an RSS (Really Simple Syndication) aggregator. RSS aggregators crawl the web looking for new content on news sites, blogs or anywhere else. Bloglines, recently bought by AskJeeves, is one of the better known versions.More here. ®

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