homepage Welcome to WebmasterWorld Guest from
register, free tools, login, search, pro membership, help, library, announcements, recent posts, open posts,
Become a Pro Member
Visit PubCon.com
Home / Forums Index / Search Engines / European Search Engines
Forum Library, Charter, Moderators: Rumbas

European Search Engines Forum

Yahoo To Pull out of Scandinavia

 6:38 pm on Jan 22, 2004 (gmt 0)


COPENHAGEN (AFP) - The US Internet portal giant Yahoo! will pull out of Scandinavia at the end of the month, closing its Nordic branch in Copenhagen which covers Norway and Sweden in addition to Denmark, a company employee said.



 6:43 pm on Jan 22, 2004 (gmt 0)

Oh how DO you find them Brett :)

The Danish branch posted a loss of 21 million kroner (3.6 million dollars, 2.8 million euros) -- double its loss the year before.

That has to be a very worrying sign for Yahoo. They shouldn't be increasing their losses at this stage of their life cycle anywhere on the planet.

My question: Who has stolen Yahoo's market share in Scandinavia? Or was that section simply not run well?


 7:00 pm on Jan 22, 2004 (gmt 0)

Offhand I don't think there's any European country where Yahoo is in the black with overall operations. Yahoo is not even close in market share in Europe to their US position.
Scandinavia has extremely high internet usage, and money to spend too. But there are just not so many people.


 7:51 pm on Jan 22, 2004 (gmt 0)

Offhand I don't think there's any European country where Yahoo is in the black with overall operations.

What about the UK?


 8:52 pm on Jan 22, 2004 (gmt 0)

From January 31 the se/no/dk Yahoo´s will redirect to Yahoo.com as not only the Yahoo offices will close but also the websites.

Strange situation - The nordic region with no Yahoo websites.

We will miss Yahoo.


 9:07 pm on Jan 22, 2004 (gmt 0)

>> Who has stolen Yahoo's market share in Scandinavia?

I can only speak for Denmark - it wasn't really there, as they had a local clone there before the real Yhoo ever left the stanford.edu domain (was it Stanford? it's so long ago now..). There's a Danish company by the name of Jubii (essentially "Yahoo" in Danish - it started out as a Danish version of Yahoo) that's quite big.

MSN is quite large too, and the two largest TV stations as well as the largest telco are quite dominant as well (they run several sites).

Weekly traffic figures can be seen here (Yhoo #5):

Jubii pulled out of these measurements before MSN entered, but these old figures show that Jubii was about the same size as MSN a year ago: [fdim.dk...]

Added: In Norway and Sweden MSN is also currently #1 - Jubii, btw, was bought by Terra Lycos two(?) years ago, as was one of the large Swedish sites "Spray.se".
Norwegian weekly traffic figures [tns-gallup.no]
Swedish weekly traffic figures [mediacom.it-norr.se]


 9:28 pm on Jan 22, 2004 (gmt 0)

In Norway it has been taken by local portals, such as start.no. Yahoo has also been abandoned by many local businesses, who would rather have a presence on local protals. I think the scandinavian market is reaching a good level of maturity and Yahoo may have realised that, since they haven't broken in by now, it is a good time to cut their losses and go. I don't think many people there will miss them.

Considering the percentage of people online in Scandinavia (some of the highest in the world) this may also be an indicator for the future of other local Yahoos.


 9:50 pm on Jan 22, 2004 (gmt 0)

It certainly poses some questions about the overall strategy of Yahoo. The US market certainly is the single most important market. But in terms of eyeballs it's a fairly small piece of the cake, and even in terms of ad revenue and consumer spending it's a permanently decreasing part of what the internet has to offer.
Yahoo taking it up with Google, or even MS? Then they better don't pull out of too many markets.

Mikkel Svendsen

 7:25 am on Jan 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

Yahoo has never been really big in Denmark. As an estimate, based on experience across many clients I would say they probably have 4-6% of the search market and as a portal they never really reached the top: Both MSN and Eniro (formerly Scandinavia Online/Kvasir/SOL) are bigger and Jubii outnumber them all. For as long as I remember Jubii (now owned by Lycos Europe) have had approx twice as many visitors and page views as the next biggest site! In the last couple of years, Jubii has, off course, lost a lot of the search traffic to Google - as most others, but Jubii still remain the most visited website in Denmark.

troels nybo nielsen

 9:12 am on Jan 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

Mikkel's analysis sums it up nicely. And their fundamental problem most likely was the one mentioned by claus: That they simply came too late. Others were already strongly established when Yahoo came to Scandinavia and they never really came near to the fight about being #1.

I seem to remember that already when Yahoo first came to Denmark at least one Danish web analyst (Steven Snedker) wrote that they were too late and were doing nothing that was not already being done by Jubii.

I for one will miss them. I regard their web directory as clearly the best on any of the large Danish portals and I as a webmaster always was treated extremely well by their editors.


 10:28 am on Jan 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

In a way it is reassuring to see that "the American way" of doing business doesn't suit all areas of the world regardless of funding and that local knowledge will be important for a few generations yet.

But I think it IS important that Yahoo and Google both make good commercial decisions right now, because the sleeping bear of Microsoft is about to awake and do a Netscape on the whole seen. That would could be devastating if they aren't ready.


 11:06 am on Jan 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

> In a way it is reassuring to see that "the American way" of doing business doesn't suit all areas of the world

What is Jubii doing then? :)

troels nybo nielsen

 11:26 am on Jan 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

I don't think that this is a question about "the American way". It's about "the Microsoft way", "the Yahoo way" and "the Google way".

The strength of msn.dk is to a very large extent built on the strength of Internet Explorer which in turn is built on the strength of Windows. And an OS like Windows has a much stronger hold on people than a portal, a web directory or a search engine.

And msn.dk in its turn strengthens Internet Explorer and Windows. If msn.dk need money there will be good sense for Microsoft in sending them that money.

The strength of Google in Scandinavia and elsewhere is built on something very different: It is VERY easy to leave an inferior search engine and start using a superior one. This fact was what gave Google their almost incredible rise. But now that they have grown big it is also their great weakness. They can lose their users very easily and quickly.

Yahoo are somewhere between those two. They do not like Microsoft have an OS that people have paid for and therefore keep and use. And they do not have the flexibility of Google. Their seach engines might of course have it but not their portals.

There is nothing special in creating a collection of links and letting it grow into a bloated portal. Anybody could do that. Many HAVE done that. To have succes with such a model it is very important to be the first to grow big in your market. Yahoo did that in the USA. In Scandinavia they were too late.


 3:08 pm on Jan 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

I can comfirm that they are closing down all operations here and sending everybody home.

It's yahoo.com for Scandianvian users in the future.

Exciting to see if this a sign that the Yahoo! Directory might be history - not only here, but worldwide?



 4:20 pm on Jan 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

>> Jubii still remain the most visited website in Denmark.

While Jubii does not currently participate in the official Internet measurement they still publish their own traffic figures measured using the same method (cookie-based).

For Week 3 - 2004 the sum of Unique Visitors were:

#1) MSN.dk: 916.838
#2) Jubii.dk: 879.346
#3) Krak.dk: 728.537 (Map and street information)
#4) DR.dk: 681.194 (Largest public service TV-station)
#5) TV2.dk: 502.931 (Largest commercial TV station)
#6) Yahoo.dk: 462.822

This is for individual web sites (defined by Look&Feel), not companies - the largest telco and ISP (TDC, US owned) is a solid #1 when measured across all websites on a company basis. Second is Microsoft, and third is Jubii.

Measured on company basis and not web site basis, Yahoo is currently #10 and Mikkel is right that Eniro is bigger as well (they run two fairly large portals, the biggest being just below Yahoo in the site-centric figures).


 11:02 am on Jan 28, 2004 (gmt 0)

Msg. no. 6 by claus:

In Norway and Sweden MSN is also currently #1...

Many portals and search engines (like Google) do not participate in the official Internet measurement which is performed by TNS Gallup (cookie-based). This means that the figures that you find in the Norwegian Weekly Traffic Figures [tns-gallup.no] are uncorrect.

MSN is currently NOT #1 in Norway, because Google does not participate in theese measurements. ;)

Mikkel Svendsen

 12:12 pm on Jan 28, 2004 (gmt 0)

Also, i'd like to emphazise that even though some of the numbers from competing stats looks the same they may not be. Jubii pulled out of the Gallup index because they did not like the new rules they introduced last year, so Jubii's numbers and Gallups are not based on the same metrics.

Just beacause the stats are based on cookies does not mean they are the same - there are many other factors that have a huge impact on what is reported.


 1:14 pm on Jan 28, 2004 (gmt 0)

We miss the Google figures from DK, SE, and NO, and i also think they are quite large - quite possibly somewhere in top 3 or so, i don't think it's impossible for them to be #1 on the site-centric figures. It's true that not all sites participate (it's primarily sites from the country in question and sites that are commercial) it took a few years to get MSN as well as Yahoo included in the official stats and it might take a few years with Google as well i think.

The Jubii.dk thing... well, i personally debated a lot with Jubii representatives over the new rules and i don't want to repeat the debate here. I am very confident that the figures are not uncomparable; although Jubii often have had a loud voice and sometimes have appeared as provocative towards the whole industry, i definitely don't suspect them to be cheating on the figures.

For those that haven't followed the debate, i should add that the primary concern of Jubii was that the MSN-branded Search pages (the browser default search for those that haven't switched to Google yet) is included in the MSN figures - this is probably an important ingredient in the size of MSN.dk, but it does not influence the size of Jubii.dk.

Mikkel Svendsen

 1:45 pm on Jan 28, 2004 (gmt 0)

I disagree on several points:

1) There are no "official" stats for dk. Gallup is not by any law, agreement between all sites, or in any other way any more "official" than any other stats thatmight be available.

2) Data for stats that are collected under different terms and conditions are NOT comparable. Off course not. I think most people working with statistics will agree on that :)

If you know exactly what the difference in data between one source and another is you could theoretically argue that it is possible to use that in your calculations and end up with acceptable results. However, I haven't yet seen anyone that makes local visitor reporting based on a weighted index across several different (web) data sets ...


 1:02 am on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

>> I disagree on several points
Okay, i accept that you hold your own opinion for whatever reason, but please don't misguide the large share of people in this forum that are not familiar with the Danish internet industry. I'll keep it brief:

The stats i referred to are the official Danish stats, as agreed by the Association of Danish Internet Media (FDIM). Although they might not have the same industry body yet in Norway and Sweden, a similar method is still used - there are minor differences and i'll be happy to elaborate on every single detail right down to the frequency of self-refreshing pageviews allowed, but it's both outside the scope and the topic of this thread.

It is not "Gallup" stats. Gallup is the subcontractor performing the measurement - it's a subcontractor, it's not the publisher. The publisher, and the body responsible for the rules (ie. what to measure, and how) is the Association of Danish Internet Media (FDIM) and not Gallup. There is but one significant Danish internet company that is (temporarily, i hope) absent from this industry statistic. This company is a member of the FDIM as can be seen from the members list [fdim.dk] and i have no reason whatsoever to believe that they are cheating.

I'll have no more to say about this here, sorry for drifting off topic. The topic was Yahoo and their relative position, and the figures i quoted did show that their position was not as dominant as might be desired. Still, they were operating large sites. I guess the market is such that it's still hard to make decent money for large "broad" portals. AFAIK, they had PFI and advertising - i'm not sure if they had premium services or subscriptions, they had no broadband or things like that.

Mikkel Svendsen

 1:27 am on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

I don't know what your goal is but what your present is nowhere near the facts - just to keep the record straight. I too respect your point of view - but thats all it is and far from what I experience.


 1:45 am on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

I think it is only a matter of time before people are able to open franciased local operations for the major portals. It would lead the way into new teritory and cut operating costs for the main operator.



 11:00 am on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

I too could easily fall into the discussion of how the pie is slized in terms on SE makret share in Denmark, but let's try to keep this thread on topic guys :)

>But there are just not so many people

Good point, however I agreed that Yahoo is not a major player, but on most sites we average at least 8-10% of total SE traffic, which ads up to a significant number of monthly visitors. Futhermore my gut feelings is that the Yahoo user base is (was) somewhat loyal and tend to convert better than some of the rouge traffic from other SE's.

I for one is very sad to see them go and have a hard time understanding that it was not profitable to run the directory. We have good insight into how much the express submission service generated in sales for them and it should be enough to cover at least a few paid editors.
Guess it was the other service areas that put them in the red.

I've worked very close with the nice folks at Yahoo for a long time and my opinions may be a bit biased ;)

Mikkel Svendsen

 11:56 am on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

The only sites I've seen that gain 8-10% search visitors from Yahoo.dk are sites that have very poor rankings at the other engines used by Danes :)

Anyway, the fact remain that there have not been one single directory ever (to my knowladge) that have made a good profitable business in Denmark - and possible all of Scandinavia. Jubii are doing ok, and LookSmart was (at one point) doing ok too - but never more than "ok".

When I was managing the search engine and directory at Kvasir we did a lot of analysis of the business of running a directory and no matter what business models and scenarios we analysed we could just not show the kind of profits the investors wanted. I think most people forget all the hidden costs. Even at $299 there was just no way we could make it profitable enough - on a local level.

The problem for local directories are that in the long run the value it produces for advertisers are not as high as the cost of producing and maintaining the directory. The product cost more to produce than what it's worth to the market.


 11:56 pm on Feb 1, 2004 (gmt 0)

Looks like it's kinda difficult for an American company such as Yahoo to attain first place on the Scandinavian market. From everything posted here, it seems that MSN is the leader in this area, an odd situation, one might say since OSDN and *opensource* itself are synonyms with "Scandinavian". Yahoo has better things to do in Asia (my opinion).

troels nybo nielsen

 12:54 am on Feb 2, 2004 (gmt 0)

Welcome to WebmasterWorld, sovidiu. Always a pleasure to see new members from countries that are not already strongly represented, and indeed we do not see many Romanians here.

AFAIK it is true that open source (and Macintosh for that matter) traditionally has a stronger position in Scandinavia than in many other places. But this does not change the fact that those people are a small minority also here.

As elsewhere MSN are helped by the simple fact that Internet Explorer makes it very easy to find MSN. Yahoo never had any advantage like that.


 8:03 pm on Feb 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

> Even at $299 there was just no way we could make it profitable enough - on a local level.

Profitable enough? So you agree that in principal it can be profitable? I mean it more revenue than costs?


 4:40 pm on Feb 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

Thank you for the greeting, Mr. Troels Nybo Nielsen. I don't know what the other Romanians are doing, since there seems to be only a few of us :)
About the subject in discussion, I'd like to say that Yahoo's departure from the Scandinavian region is somehow expected, as it is quite difficult for a company that likes to preserve its logo as a symbol of "Internet history's fathers" and try to promote it into an area where "monarchy" and "history" are intrinsic characteristics. For example, look at the way Sony is perceived in this region, it being a partner of Ericsson. They did not use old-type logos, display fonts and product names in order to make it to the top of the Scandinavian iceberg. MTV did the same as Sony (used "innovation" as definitory word for their activities in this region) and it all went A+. This old, classical-wannabe *thingie* Yahoo is trying to sell to its prospective clients might return the expected profit in the US, but not in some regions of Europe. Especially the ones that use "crowns" and "monarchy" as daily guidelines.


 5:07 pm on Feb 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

a company that likes to preserve its logo as a symbol of "Internet history's fathers"

I think that is an interesting observation that should shock Yahoo Marketers - that in Eastern Europe Yahoo's image is actually seen as old and fuddy-duddy.

How large the world still is, how varied its people and its views. Long may this remain in a world that business tries so hard to homogenize.


 12:03 pm on Feb 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

Well, as far as I can see, people living in the Eastern Europe are trying to level their concepts with the mentalities of the ones living in the EU. For instance, we (I am living in Romania, a country that wants to become a member of the European Council) are continously looking for new ideas that either get to us via the Internet or the mass-media. So I think that most of us living in this area search for innovation, by "fraudulent" inspiration (a misjudged term that sort of defines our country's Internet activity) or simply by borrowing the US/EU trends. On the other hand, people living in the Scandinavian region are defining new trends themselves, since they decided that it would be best for them not to become a member of the EU. So when you say "What is Yahoo?" to a Romanian (and by extension, to an Eastern Europe person), he would reply with "free email address provider" (what is free is always efficient - they say) or with "Old logo", while when addressing the same question to a Scandinavian, he would use "inefficient web directory, overcharged with information and American advertising banners that we do not really like". It's no wonder MSN is a leader in this area, it being able to always have that *spark* most people look for when browsing a web site. Simply because *spark* means "creation", and "creation" stands as a founding element of the European culture. Apart from analyzing the mercantile offer, the Scandinavians look for a "creative side" of the product. Simply because their living-rate (I'm not sure this is correctly written) is at a higher standard then most of the other Europeans. And they would rather like colorful (Englishmen should read: "colourful"), lively sites such as MSN (with its rainbow-like logo) than pragmatic, over-efficient ones such as Yahoo's is. Yahoo is not a tradition, just the first one that got a fine seat in this train we call "the Internet". :)

Global Options:
 top home search open messages active posts  

Home / Forums Index / Search Engines / European Search Engines
rss feed

All trademarks and copyrights held by respective owners. Member comments are owned by the poster.
Home ¦ Free Tools ¦ Terms of Service ¦ Privacy Policy ¦ Report Problem ¦ About ¦ Library ¦ Newsletter
WebmasterWorld is a Developer Shed Community owned by Jim Boykin.
© Webmaster World 1996-2014 all rights reserved