In a bit of a surprise to most people this morning, the search engine company Yahoo launched its own web browser. Axis, as the browser has been named, was introduced this morning to users on windows and mac computers (as an add-on through Firefox, Chrome, Safari, etc.), the iPhone and the iPad, with Android compatibility on its way. Most iPhone and iPad users have been stuck with only using Safari, as it is innately on iOS for all new iPhones and iPads. For people interested in another browser for their phone or iPad tablet, this has not been a possibility in the past. Now, downloaded like any other application from the App Store, iPhone and iPad users can have an option.
This is important for us to take notice from the world of search engine marketing because the default browser is of course, Yahoo.
Will this have an impact on SEO? It is hard to gauge predictions at this point, but it is very likely that owners of the iPhone and iPad alike will download the app and begin using it exclusively. If this turns out to be the case, Yahoo search results will be more important to your current SEO campaign. The app acts primarily as a search engine because it allows its users to pull down the top tab at any moment to display the results for their most recent search query. The way Yahoo is trying to differentiate itself from other search engines on the market is by displaying visual search results. In an effort to avoid the “blue links” that you would often see in Yahoo’s browser side search engine or other popular search engines, the app displays the top search results through a glimpse of the homepage of each site. Now, instead of clicking on a link because of its ranking, title tag(s) or description tag, users may choose to click through to a site that is visually appealing.
Of course, we will be testing this over the next little while to determine its impact. In the meantime, if you see your rankings in Yahoo take a dive, give us a call.