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Yesterday, I was having an issue finding my client’s local listings in the Yahoo! search engine. I have experienced similar problems with Yahoo!’s IP targeting in the past, however, I was still concerned that I wasn’t seeing listings for the Los Angeles DMA. In response to my initial inquiry, I received the following email from a representative at Yahoo! Search Marketing earlier today.

Now, let’s play a game of “What’s Wrong with this Picture.”

Keep in mind, this is an actual email and these are the actual screenshots. Only the private information has been censored or altered in any way.

Oct 10 2007 09:38 PT

Hello Mike,

Thank you for contacting Yahoo! Search Marketing regarding your listings for keywords “laser hair removal” and “laser tattoo removal” not appearing on Yahoo! Search. We are happy to assist you.

We were able to locate your listings online (please see attached screenshots for examples). If you are unable to see your listings, this may be due to your computer’s IP address being incorrectly localized. Our geotargeting system specifically looks for users with IP addresses in the specific regions (“DMAs”) you’ve specified and will only serve to users that match your criteria with a high degree of confidence.

We would like to investigate this matter further on your behalf but request that you supply your specific IP address in order for us to do so. This information is needed to replicate a search conducted within your particular geographic location as you are utilizing our Geotargeting feature to ensure that your listings are only displayed for results within those areas. Please reply directly to this e-mail making sure to include your IP address which can be acquired from such websites as www.whatismyip.com.

Thank you for choosing Yahoo! Search Marketing!


Technical Services
Yahoo! Search Marketing

Here are the screenshots provided, our client’s listings are highlighted in blue. Now, remember what game we’re playing?

I know that these images are difficult to read, but if you have been paying attention, you will have noticed that this is besides the point. After all, how would sending me my Google listings help rectify our visibility issues in Yahoo!?

Now, I know that a situation this ridiculous warrants some doubts, and there isn’t a really solid way to prove that a Yahoo! employee sent me Google results to prove the visibility for my Yahoo! keywords, but I thought that the following screenshot my help add to the credibility of this post:

That’s right, it’s my inbox and although it’s a bit hard to make out, you can clearly see the Yahoo! signature right above the Google screenshot. Now, it would be easy to make this mistake under normal circumstances, and this mistake was not made by our Yahoo! representative (who is nothing short of brilliant, to tell you the truth), but doesn’t this seem like the kind of faux pas that would happen at Yahoo! and never a Google?

I mean, really, you just can’t make this stuff up!


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