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New Targeting Options Now Available

New YSM Targeting Options Now Available



10:02 pm on Mar 16, 2009 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Hi All,

I wanted to let you know about some great new audience targeting features that we just launched for our Sponsored Search and Content Match products.

Specifically, we’ve introduced:
- Ad scheduling, a dayparting tool that enables advertisers to schedule their ads for display at different times and days across an entire week.
- Bid adjustments, which allow advertisers to specify a premium bid amount for desired demographic groups and audiences.
- Enhanced ZIP Code-level geo-targeting, including greater control of how your ads are displayed.
- Upgrades to the management of Content Match, including the ability to choose what portion of your budget to allot to this product.

You can find out a lot more about these features on our blog [ysmblog.com] or in our Help Center [help.yahoo.com]. If you have any questions about these changes that aren’t answered in either of those places, please post them here and I’ll try to answer them.




7:18 am on Mar 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I guess you *forgot* the "Turn off junk traffic that inflates our stock price" feature...again.

[edited by: JoeT321 at 7:21 am (utc) on Mar. 17, 2009]


4:25 am on Mar 18, 2009 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator 10+ Year Member

So what time zone specifically is "your customers time zone" if they are in the US? Eastern, Central,Pacific, Hawaiian? Those 3 hours make a huge difference, so please clarify that.

BTW the two biggest features your advertisers want are the ability to turn off shopping.yahoo.com ( which features search arbitrage) and the crappy landing page/domain parkers "partners".


6:19 am on Mar 18, 2009 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

- Ad scheduling, a dayparting tool that enables advertisers to schedule their ads for display at different times and days across an entire week.

I've noticed before that when I don't run ads 24/7, as in trying to do Ad Scheduling manually, it drops my quality scores.


7:57 pm on Mar 18, 2009 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

@eljefe3: Different advertisers have different targeting needs when it comes to time zones. For example, you might choose to only display your ads during the hours in which your phone number is answered by a live representative. Or perhaps you sell a product geared toward teenagers, so it doesn’t make sense to display your ads during school hours. Of course, you'll need to factor in the different time zones you serve.

We encourage you to think about how the new ad scheduling feature might be beneficial to your business, test out different strategies and closely monitor your results to ensure that they meet your business objectives.

@JoeT321 and eljefe3: Look for additional enhancements to be introduced later this year, which will provide advertisers with more control over their traffic, and greater transparency into the sources of their traffic. All I can say for now. ;-)


5:54 am on Mar 19, 2009 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Sounds great...can you give us an estimate? Q2,3,4?


1:23 am on Mar 22, 2009 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I really like some of the new targeting options. That being said, I would like the option to reduce bids based on certain criteria and not increase bids. As it stands now to use less desirable groups, I would have to go back and reprice things and then adjust up for those I want. The option should allow an adjustment up or down.


6:51 pm on Apr 2, 2009 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

@JoeT321: Sorry, can't pinpoint by quarter. Stay tuned...

@aeiouy: That's a valid point, and you're not the first to make it. It will be considered for future releases.


5:50 pm on Apr 9, 2009 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

The ability to block all "search" partners is really the tool that is most desired.


5:56 am on Apr 11, 2009 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator 10+ Year Member

Will using the new "local targeting" actually prevent our ads from being served overseas? Or is it just another feature to get the attention off the terrible quality traffic of the "Yahoo! Search Partners"?

Currently we are using "North American YSM" and should only be getting North American traffic, but if I look through our logs I can see that 29% of the traffic is coming from foreign countries.

I could see how maybe 2-3% could come from proxies or things like that, but this traffic is highly suspect.

This month we have had 2061 Yahoo! clicks being reported in our logs, with the breakdown of traffic being:

Country - Clicks - %
United States - 1156 - 56.14%
India - 200 - 9.71%
Canada - 186 - 9.03%
Mexico - 117 - 5.68%
Germany - 54 - 2.62%
Indonesia - 32 - 1.55%
Malaysia - 23 - 1.12%
Italy - 15 - 0.73%
Guatemala - 14 - 0.68%
Puerto Rico - 14 - 0.68%
Pakistan - 11 - 0.53%
United Kingdom - 11 - 0.53%
China - 10 - 0.49%
Korea, Republic of10 - 0.49%
Poland - 10 - 0.49%
Vietnam - 10 - 0.49%
Bangladesh - 8 - 0.39%
Greece - 8 - 0.39%
Dominican Republic7 - 0.34%
Serbia - 7 - 0.34%
Argentina - 6 - 0.29%
Switzerland - 6 - 0.29%
Thailand - 6 - 0.29%
Trinidad and Tobago6 - 0.29%
Australia - 5 - 0.24%
Chile - 5 - 0.24%
Kuwait - 5 - 0.24%
Nigeria - 5 - 0.24%
Satellite Provider5 - 0.24%
Spain - 5 - 0.24%
France - 4 - 0.19%
Jamaica - 4 - 0.19%
Lebanon - 4 - 0.19%
Philippines - 4 - 0.19%
Syrian Arab Republic4 - 0.19%
Turkey - 4 - 0.19%
Venezuela - 4 - 0.19%
Costa Rica - 3 - 0.15%
Hungary - 3 - 0.15%
Ireland - 3 - 0.15%
Morocco - 3 - 0.15%
Norway - 3 - 0.15%
Russian Federation3 - 0.15%
Sweden - 3 - 0.15%
Taiwan - 3 - 0.15%
Algeria - 2 - 0.10%
Algeria - 2 - 0.10%
Belgium - 2 - 0.10%
Brazil - 2 - 0.10%
Brunei Darussalam2 - 0.10%
Bulgaria - 2 - 0.10%
Colombia - 2 - 0.10%
El Salvador - 2 - 0.10%
Lithuania - 2 - 0.10%
Netherlands Antilles2 - 0.10%
Nicaragua - 2 - 0.10%
Portugal - 2 - 0.10%
South Africa - 2 - 0.10%
Ukraine - 2 - 0.10%
Aruba - 1 - 0.05%
Bahamas - 1 - 0.05%
Cameroon - 1 - 0.05%
Cayman Islands - 1 - 0.05%
Croatia - 1 - 0.05%
Egypt - 1 - 0.05%
Ethiopia - 1 - 0.05%
Ghana - 1 - 0.05%
Guyana - 1 - 0.05%
Haiti - 1 - 0.05%
Honduras - 1 - 0.05%
Iraq - 1 - 0.05%
Israel - 1 - 0.05%
Japan - 1 - 0.05%
Kenya - 1 - 0.05%
Monaco - 1 - 0.05%
Nepal - 1 - 0.05%
New Zealand - 1 - 0.05%
Panama - 1 - 0.05%
Romania - 1 - 0.05%
Singapore - 1 - 0.05%
Sri Lanka - 1 - 0.05%
Tanzania, United Republic of - 1 - 0.05%
Uganda - 1 - 0.05%

Of those 2061 that we received we were billed for 1894. This is roughly 8% of "bad traffic" that is being caught or screened by Yahoo!

There is another 21% that is not being caught, screened or refunded.

The scariest/funniest part of this is; Of the 2061 clicks, only 43 came from Yahoo! or ca.search.yahoo.com. That is 2.1% of traffic we received or 2.3% of traffic we paid for.


8:41 pm on Apr 13, 2009 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

werty, are you using the Blocked Continents tool? It allows you to select the continents from which you do not wish to receive traffic. (Our lawyers make me say this next part: The accuracy of the Blocked Continents feature is not guaranteed, and may vary depending on a number of factors, such as the quality and type of data in the traffic stream that we receive. For example, if a searcher is using a product or service that makes the IP address "anonymous," our systems will be unable to determine his/her location, and therefore will be unable to apply continent blocking.)

Follow these steps to turn on or modify Blocked Continents:
1. Click on the “Administration” tab.
2. Click on the “Account General Information” link
3. In the Blocked Continents field, select the checkbox for each continent to block. You cannot block your own continent, meaning the continent included in the market of your account.
4. Click “Save Changes”.

Hope this helps,



5:09 pm on Apr 14, 2009 (gmt 0)

We paused all our Yahoo! campaigns months ago, after seeing clicks coming from these "parked" linkfarm domains. They don't get ranked since they don't have content, so it must be the owners clicking on them. They were accessing the search listings and not the content ones.

Is there a reason why the search partners can't be blocked or advertisers choose the search partners they want the ads to appear on?

[edited by: MrHard at 5:13 pm (utc) on April 14, 2009]


6:31 pm on Apr 14, 2009 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Is there a reason why the search partners can't be blocked or advertisers choose the search partners they want the ads to appear on?

Yes, there is a very good reason. Money. The only thing you can do is block up to 500 domains individually.

Despite parked sites looking spammy and like just plain crap, I've seen some good sales from them in the past.


2:34 am on Apr 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Our lawyers make me say this next part:
I didn't know you need a lawyer to post here...

I guess Yahoo knows they sell crappy traffic so they consult a lawyer before they say anything

The ability to block all "search" partners is really the tool that is most desired.
Just do it!


1:01 pm on Apr 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

The zip code targeting is pretty useless. The zip codes i see are offering such short distances such as 3 and 6 miles from the home zip code. Why not simply allow us to add by radius as well. You should also allow us to remove or exclude certain zips within a radius as well. I would suggest at least a 50 mile radius perhaps even up to 100 when you are dealing with some of the states.

In our industry sometimes when a client is near a state border we can't cross the border into another state so that's why we need the ability to exclude or remove certain zips.


2:03 pm on Apr 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Yahoo needs to develop a desktop application to reduce the time it takes to make bulk edits. All of these features are great, but since it would take me hours to implement them across all of my campaigns I probably won't get around to testing them for sometime.


7:56 pm on Apr 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

I like these features and thanks for adding them. Would be nice to see the data though that is not 2 - 3 days behind lately. I was hoping reporting would be getting faster, yet it gets slower. I wanted to adjust some campaigns after looking at the data, but 3 days behind could mean a lot as I only turned this on a couple of weeks ago. Yahoo, please report faster...



8:21 pm on Apr 16, 2009 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator 10+ Year Member

Hello Pete,

Sorry for the delay. On our accounts we current are blocking:
Blocked Continents **: Asia
South America

So that feature does not seem to work properly.


1:19 pm on Apr 25, 2009 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Our yahoo rep explained to us that zip targeting isn't working as planned. Why release something that doesn't work? They told us that we should go to DMA's instead, huh? Why the hell would you have zip level if it doesn't work. No wonder they get bashed so much, it's a joke.

YahooPete, when will the zip targeting actually begin to work as advertised? In today's market DMA's don't work for our clients, they are very precise about where they want customers coming from. When and if it's ready why not give us the ability to use true radius instead of choices only 3 or 6 miles. Come on you guys are better than that and have the talent to make this a valueable tool. Thanks


10:35 pm on May 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

You guys that are complaining about Yahoo partner traffic need to upgrade your tracking software...

Anyone who knows their ass from a hole in the ground when it comes to PPC, will tell you that partner traffic outconverts yahoo traffic.

This applies to google as well.

We're not talking one niche either. This applies to virtually every vertical.

It's not brain surgery. The dumber the visitor, the better the conversions. That's why isp traffic is top notch.


4:31 pm on May 18, 2009 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member

you're assuming we don't track things...

"Anyone who knows their ass from a hole in the ground when it comes to PPC, will tell you that partner traffic outconverts yahoo traffic."
another broad assumption...

let me make an assumption... if this traffic was so rich, they'd give us separate controls for it to maximize what they get for supplying it.

reality is, in some cases it may be great for someone, in others, not so much. as such, give us controls (as others have) so that we may optimize our results instead of ignominiously swallowing it all without segmentation abilities... in those cases where it's suboptimal for some, it hurts Y because those folks must turn everything down to minimize what they as garbage being forced down the gullet.


6:39 pm on May 18, 2009 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator 10+ Year Member

Like RhinoFish stated, it will depend by industry. For us partner traffic is terrible on both Yahoo! And Google. On Google we can turn it off, and on Yahoo we just lower our bids until the point of profit, or in some cases just pause the account.

In what I put above, my one beef w/ Yahoo! is the foreign traffic.

First of all they do not have the option to buy purely US traffic. This is stupid... I do not sell to Canada or to Mexico, but those countries get lumped in to the traffic pool.

In addition to that roughly 30% of the traffic was from locations outside of North America. So I am getting screwed there.

If you look just at the partners, there are multi-hyphened-domains.info that send more traffic then yahoo.com. How can you say this is a quality partner?

Supposedly they are going to add more control to the accounts. If/when they do that, and it actually works, my spend will go up.


2:16 am on May 19, 2009 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I don't know what niches you guys run in, but we touch on almost every vertical.

Almost always, I can narrow the garbage partner traffic down to 1 or 2 sites. I've had no problem getting Yahoo to stop sending traffic from any sites I specify.

We just track on a referring URL level and send them the losers, which are usually 1 or 2 sites.

... and are you serious about not being able to filter foreign traffic in Yahoo. These are options available in my account, and everyone elses I know of.

Exactly 99.5% of my traffic from yahoo is confirmed from the US by a GEO-IP script I run. I hope I misread what you wrote, or that perhaps you mis-typed it.

[edited by: NoLimits at 2:20 am (utc) on May 19, 2009]


8:32 pm on May 19, 2009 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator 10+ Year Member

If you scroll up, those are actual country data by IP... that is for one of the industries I am in. It is garbage.

Also for many of the referring "partner sites" that i have tried to block, I am not actually able to, due to the clicks coming from a second or third tier down.

1. yahoo > 2. first semi legit partner > 3. shady partner > 4. crappy crappy site.

The crappy site will encrypt the clicks and some how mask them... I do not think they are actually supposed to show up on that site. If we block the domain at 4. it does not show up, and if we block 3 it does not work, and we cannot figure out where 2 is to block it.

On some accounts they were able to block it for us, but we have not been able to get Yahoo! to do it for all accounts.

From my experience I am not too far out of line with the traffic I have been seeing. It seems like you are quite lucky in the niche/s you are in. In ours it is garbage, and quite hard to make profitable.

Regarding foreign traffic, I have those other countries disabled, but it does not matter.


10:03 am on Jun 3, 2009 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

It's getting worse than that, lately I'm seeing in my reports that some domains (more and more), after being blocked as DOMAIN.com & www.DOMAIN.com start sending traffic from a different 3rd level domain. e.g. www2.DOMAIN.com.

Once you start receiving traffic from www2.DOMAIN.com, you cant block it unless you unblock www.Doman.com. This, most likely will bring back the flood of sewer traffic back from the unblocked domain.

Y's blocked domain section note:
You can enter:
* A root domain (for example, example.com) to block your ads from an entire site
* Up to one sub-domain (for example, www.example.com or services.example.com) to block your ads from pages that are in that specific sub-domain
* Up to two directories (for example, www.example.com/news/money) to block your ads from pages that are in that directory structure

Oh, and another thing:

That's what's written way down under in the administration section on Yahoo's UI:

"**Note: The accuracy of the blocked continents feature is not guaranteed and may vary depending on a number of factors."

Which is basically like saying "if you wish to block continents, YOU can TRY, but we guarantee nothing."


(Yahoo, get in an orderly line where it's easier to shoot you!)


11:05 am on Jun 3, 2009 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Oh, and it's redundant to mention that by blocking a DOMAIN.com doesn't actually block traffic from www.DOMAIN.com... Yahoo reps in more than one country mentioned that to me.


6:41 pm on Jul 7, 2009 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member


What's funny, is that if you look at the disclaimer on the geo-targetting area, they don't actually promise to block any foreign countries.

I have very similiar numbers to yours and find that 99% of the foreign traffic comes from YSM's awesome partners. When i talked to my rep to discuss this, she stated that they cannot prohibit foreigners from using Yahoo Search, obviously.. she didn't know what she was talking about.

I cannot wait to see Yahoo catch up with google and move to whitelist vs. blacklist approach to who displays our ads. Over the years, YSM has been the worst experience of all our online marketing endeavors.

@JoeT321 - I couldn't have said it better myself. Absolutely no incentive for them to change their practice, as soon as they do (which will likely not be garaunteed) their profit margins are going to plummet. Unless of course, they have figured out a new way to inflate their CTRs.


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