Reasons why bing Yahoo could be huge in Japan

With Softbank president’s “Go” sign for bing-Yahoo alliance, Yahoo could further expand the market share in Japan with bing’s pillar search services, which are all popular among Japanese search users.

Since the announcement of bing-Yahoo deal in US, Softbank president has made a comment that he welcomed the deal, and there was a high possibility for Yahoo Japan to incorporate bing search, too. While the detail is still need to be discussed between the two search giants, his public comment can be viewed as a “GO” sign for the deal in Japan. (Softbank is the biggest share holder of Yahoo Japan.)

Personally, I think bing and Yahoo Japan are even a better match than US counterparts, and here’s why:

Yahoo Japan would keep its popular brand that has been known as a face of search in Japan. This will prevent from losing search users for not being familiar with bing search. Many search users simply search using Yahoo tool bar, and it’ll probably take a while for many (average) search users to notice that it’s powered by bing.

Yahoo Japan’s popular services are; Yahoo Shopping, Yahoo Auctions, Yahoo Travel, and Yahoo “Chiebukuro” (Q&A). This fit perfectly with bing’s search pillars like Shopping search and Travel search. bing Japan provides Q&A as one of the pillar search, too. I think Japanese search users would love bing’s shopping and travel search services, which is (in my opinion) the best search services out there. bing should do a better job marketing each function rather than to concentrating on creating brand recognition. People will come once they know what they can do with it.

It looks that Yahoo Japan would switch its PPC services from Overture to MS’s AdCenter once the deal is made in Japan. This would be a great news to advertisers who are running campaigns targeting multiple markets, who are having to set up a separate account with Overture Japan in order to run PPC campaigns in Japanese market.

bing offers “cashback” services for shoppers. In Japan, the incentives such as “points” and “cashback” work really well, and we may see higher click through rate once the service begins in Japan, though it would probably take a while for bing and Yahoo to finalize the cashback alliance deal with local merchants. Where and how easy you can redeem the cashback pionts is the key.