The company, Yahoo Inc, is an international company offering personalized and customized communications, search and content tools on the web. Most of the products that the company provides are customized to meet the user requirements on both web and mobile device users. Across the United States, the company ranks among the most popular websites due to the uniqueness of features it possesses. In fact, it is provides the most read news and media with a cumulated readership of more than 7 billion views per week. As of June, 2015, Yahoo was the fourth most visited site worldwide with more than 700 million people visiting their websites every month. Clearly, the company is a force to reckon with in the World Wide Web because of the large influence it has online. In the company’s own words, it attracts more than half a billion consumers every month through its use of more than 30 languages.
Yahoo is an America-registered multinational company headquartered in Sunnyvale, California. Internationally, it is renowned for its search engine and related services serving search portals, email transfers and social media communication. Currently, the company is one of the leading international brands in terms of internet media and competes with companies such as Facebook and Twitter. Obviously, every other person in the world has used the company’s services in the process of browsing the internet. The huge internet presence makes it an ideal bet in terms of searching content for millions of users across the globe. The company uses its unending compilation of external links that click to other websites to make the browsing experience memorable (Angel, 2012). In addition, the company boasts of an extensive searchable database that helps internet users navigate the World Wide Web effectively.
The mode of operation for the company makes it free for users to access their websites online. This is based on the fact that the company is not funded through subscriptions but by the numerous advertisements that it hosts on its platform. In this regard, advertisers from all spheres pay to promote their services and products on the website. Although it faces stiff competition from sites such as Facebook and Twitter, the company is leading in terms of visits each day. At the moment, the company boasts of more than 24 billion page views daily. Obviously, hitting such numbers is not impossible with more than 25 global websites that use more than 13 languages. Perhaps the high uptake in the company’s products is explained in the strategy of having them free for the users. For instance, the company offers other peripheral services for free such free email accounts and online chat areas. In addition to these services, the company is careful to offer tailor made news to the users based on their demographic locations thus increasing the number of views even further (Blozis & Cohen, 2009).
The company is publicly held and trades in the US stock exchange thus putting it under the regulations of US laws. The principal shareholders for the company are the FMR Corporation which has a 12.5% stake in the company. The co-founders of the company are also main shareholders with large percentages of stock in the company. As thus, David Filo has a 7.9% stake while his colleague Jerry Yang owns 6.7% of the company. Last year, the company developed a new customized search experience on mobile devices through which web results are displayed. In addition, the new platform has the ability to extract personalized contextual results from a user’s contacts, emails and calendar when they are signed in. In so doing, Yahoo helps users to find all the information they are looking for and take action on all that information on the go. Through its Yahoo Gemini platform, the company wishes to develop newer platforms that have the ability to anticipate a user’s need from the contents of their emails, contacts and search history.
The company also has an agreement with Microsoft where the latter provides paid search advertising services on behalf of the Yahoo Company. The agreement is based on a volume commitment for the company to attain 51% of the paid searches recorded from desktop computers that can access Yahoo websites. In this agreement, the company is only supposed to display Microsoft’s paid search results on the search result pages. Last year, the company entered into an agreement with Google Inc thus providing it with more flexibility in choosing among suppliers of ads and search results. The two agreements with both Microsoft and Google complement Yahoo Gemini in terms of advancing the company’s search and advertising prospects. In terms of communications, Yahoo banks of its Yahoo Mail branch in offering users a primary platform for engagement and holding conversations (Angel, 2012). The platform connects users with the people and contacts that are most important to them through personalized synchronizations. Moreover, the mail accounts are offered one terabyte of space for storage of contacts, shared files and messaging threads. Moreover, the company connects with other external mail providers including Outlook, AOL and Gmail to provide its users with the bets mailing experience.
The company offers various products to the users including Yahoo.com which is a primary point for browsers. This product consolidates the most relevant functionality and content from the web depending on the preferences of the user. Moreover, the company also offers Yahoo Search through applications and experiences on personal computers, mobile phones and tablets. This product is the primary search engine and is used by users to peruse content and search for topics they find interesting. Yahoo News is another product that avails original and syndicated news through text, videos and photos thus engaging users with regular up to date coverage and analysis of trending topics. It is common to find users glued to their screens following events happening live through their Yahoo News experience. Moreover, it has another extension of sports where sports enthusiasts can gain access to live sports news on their phones, computers and tablets. Global sports events as well as statistics and analysis of key sports personalities can be found through this product.
Yahoo has also ventured into the realm of finance by providing a product that covers financial information, data and tools that aid in financial decision making of the users. Still, Yahoo Entertainment provides users with a unique experience in terms of emerging trends in the entertainment field. In addition, the product has tons of news and is a leading destination for celebrity gossip, music, awards and TV premieres (Angel, 2012). Surprisingly, the company has a product for women in Yahoo Shine that gives tips and features an in-depth scrutiny of subjects such as careers, fashion, parenting as well as health of women. Also, the company has a mail product that aids in the sharing of mails and files for users across different countries. All the products are provided in a variety of languages thus meeting a wider target population.
Yahoo was initially started at Stanford University in the United States by two people. It started as a result of Jerry Yang and David Filo coming up with a website named “Jerry and David’s Guide to the World Wide Web” i9n 1994. The two people later became the founders of the Yahoo Inc Company after the initial success. The original website was a guide containing other directories of other websites in a hierarchical fashion as opposed to the common searchable index format. It is because of this feature that the website was renamed to yahoo in April 1994 to mean “Yet another hierarchically organized oracle”. In the following year, the two founders created the yahoo.com domain thus heralding the rise in popularity for the website.
The company grew steadily in the 1990s diversifying into a web portal and following various acquisitions of a high profile nature. Some of the acquisitions by Yahoo included Four11 whose webmail service was transformed into Yahoo Mail. All along, the company’s price of stock increased hitting an all time high in 2000 before falling to its lowest price in the following year. In 20008, Microsoft Corporation offered to acquire the company but the deal was rejected on offer. Following a series of poor performance, the company engaged in a massive layoff plan that affected more than 2000 employees in 2012. Today, the company continues with its acquisitions but its performance in terms of profits is still low.
Vision and Mission Statements
The company has gone through a series of restructuring in the past years in a bid to avert the financial shortfalls and bank from the adoption of social media. In its 21 years of existence, the company has had 23 mission statements based on the trajectory of the leadership. Today its mission statement reads as thus: “To connect people to their passions, communities, and the world’s knowledge” (Baker, 2010). Indeed, the current mission differentiates its path by focusing on the user life experiences and emotions. In addition, the uses of the term connect, people, passions and communities are helpful in painting the company as an organization that is user-centric. The fact that the company has had too many missions only proves the fact that they have no mission whatsoever. Even though the mission is strong theoretically, it does not reflect the true nature of Yahoo as a company. It is high time that yahoo executives commit their time to solving the problem once and for all otherwise the company will continue changing its mission statements with no changes in attitudes.
Surprisingly, the company lacks a clear brand purpose or future oriented vision that is important for the success of a company of such stature. Although it has a strong mission statement, it is literally vision-less even with the much needed transition. The lack of a powerful vision is blamed for the lack of progress in the wake of competition from other companies such as Google. Yahoo has been acting in a reactive mode for the past decade and banks on necessity to advance rather than having opportunities to become better. Yahoo thus lacks a brand vision that would propel it forth and help it push beyond the existing limits while leapfrogging the harsh realities of modern competition. Even when the CEO provided her vision for the company, it was filled with reactive stances to changes that the company must address rather than having one with growth opportunities for the company. Evidently, the company is left far too behind to catch up without having to change its mindset regarding a brand vision and mission.
Baker, L. (2010). Yahoo & Google’s mission statements: Do they connect?. Search Engine Journal, Retrieved from https://www.searchenginejournal.com/yahoo-googles-mission-statements-do-they-connect/4924/
Angel, K. (2012). Inside Yahoo!: Reinvention and the road ahead. New York: John Wiley & Sons.
Blozis, D. E., & Cohen, S. (2009). Yahoo income: How anyone of any age, location, and/or background can build a highly profitable online business with Yahoo. Ocala, Fla: Atlantic Pub. Group.
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