Below is a comparison between Google finance and Yahoo Finance:
Both Yahoo! Finance and Google Finance operate popular financial websites that provides stock quotes, financial market news and general business news. Yahoo! bills its Finance portal as its industry-leading business and financial news product, and the service has evolved from its desktop origins to utilize the mobile internet and mobile apps. Both sites consistently rank among the top 15 most popular personal finance websites and are quite similar in the financial information they provide.
Both sites are popular, but Yahoo! Finance is nearly twice as popular as Google Finance. Recent estimates put Yahoo! Finance at an estimated 70 million unique visitors each month while Google Finance is well behind at 40 million. This puts Yahoo! Finance in pole position while Google Finance is number four behind.
Perusing both websites, Yahoo! Finance has a better look, feel and much more content. Looking at each firms, Yahoo! devotes much more time and description to its Finance offerings. Yahoo! Finance has a stated mission to help users make informed investment decisions regarding investments and financial markets. It provides financial data, market information and a wide array of applications to help users obtain detailed and current market information. In stark contrast, Google only mentions Google Finance once by name and mentions it is a Google-owned site that helps it drive advertising revenue.
Google Finance does have loyal followers, however. Some market participants appreciate that it emphasizes stock charting capabilities, which is not a strength of Yahoo! Finance. Google also appears to offer more comprehensive real-time stock market quotes, though Yahoo! does offer some real-time capabilities. Some blogs have criticized Google for inaccurate market information, however Yahoo! has had its fair share of alleged data errors, although none are seen as major and the vast majority of information appears to be accurate and timely.
Google will provide Yahoo with search advertisements through Google’s AdSense for Search service (“AFS”), web algorithmic search services through Google’s Web search Service, and image search services. The results provided by Google for these services will be available to Yahoo for display on both desktop and mobile platforms.
On a day to day level, this won’t change the lives of most users. For most of us, the procedure for starting our computers every morning works the same way: power on, check email, and either before or after that, reflexively visit a search engine. We used Google to search for 1.2 trillion items a year, according to company reports. It hardly bears repeating that Google, Inc. is the dominant search engine around the world. Its use has grown to the point that much like Kleenex and Jacuzzi, Google has turned from a valuable brand name into a genericized trademark. Companies usually do their best to avoid having that happen, but on balance Google management ought to be ecstatic with the performance of its featured service.
Google, Inc. (which we’ll refer to by its full name throughout this article, to distinguish the company from its search engine) made almost $60 billion in advertising revenue last year. That’s not merely from ads on Google.com, however. It also includes ads on platforms including YouTube, which generates an estimated $6 billion in revenue per year. YouTube is Google, Inc.’s most popular non-Google branded website, but there are others (Blogger, Picasa, etc.) In the first quarter of 2015, Google, Inc. websites (as distinguished from Google Network Members’ websites, or unaffiliated sites that pay Google, Inc. for the privilege of allowing it to festoon them with ads) earned the company $11.9 billion, according to the company’s quarterly report. Without seasonal adjustments, that extrapolates to $48 billion annually.
Around the turn of the millennium, Yahoo, Inc. and Google, Inc. were somewhat evenly matched competitors – for a contemporary equivalent, much like Home Depot, Inc.
However, Google, Inc.’s revenue is now expected to be 14 times Yahoo’s this year, as the latter has fallen from its perch as “Yet another Hierarchically Organized Oracle.” In 2014, Yahoo, Inc.’s search revenue was $1.8 billion, according to the company’s annual report. Relative to your average company, that’s tremendous. But for a company that was supposed to change the world, and that still maintains designs on doing so, it’s paltry.
The Changing Search Landscape
Yahoo, Inc., founded in 1995 and stagnant for the second half of its two-decade existence, has 13% of the search market. But it’s impossible to discuss search engine market shares without mentioning that since 2009, Yahoo’s search has been powered by Bing. This deal is scheduled to expire in 2019. (It’s best to just accept the apparent conflicts of interest among tech companies, without examining them too closely.) The consequence is that Yahoo search, despite its branding, is really just Bing with a different logo. Try it yourself. Without correcting for the geographical location of your IP address, the two search engines’ results are almost identical.
Will Google, Inc.’s remain atop the search market forever? Most likely not, that’s not how competition works. But we can at least speculate as to what Google, Inc.’s downfall will be. For Google, Inc., search was originally its raison d’être. The success of the search engine enabled the company to continue a path of growth and acquisition that shows no signs of tapering off. Meanwhile, Ballmer’s successor at Microsoft is still defending Bing, stating last year that the company would not be discontinuing it.
The Bottom Line
Both Yahoo! Finance and Google Finance are great at offering overall financial market information, stock quotes and investment data, but it appears that the nearly 10-year lead that Yahoo! Finance has over Google Finance shows; the site has more robust data and content capabilities, and displays it in a much more appealing and efficient manner.
Searching on Google remains an everyday activity for most computer users; while searching on Yahoo often means that the user can’t access Google for whatever reason. While the latter two continue to attempt to distinguish themselves from the market leader, the task of eventually supplanting Google remains formidable. But with billion-dollar revenues and profits all around, this is one race in which third place is still a big winner.
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