Daily Roundup for 2008-02-06

It has been a big week of news related to Microsoft’s unsolicited bid for Yahoo!.  Today, I thought I would try to provide you with a link to series of articles and analysis on this big Internet development.

  • Most of the talk about Microsoft’s hostile offer for Yahoo has focused on whether the deal could tip the scales in the battle for Internet dominance. Today, I’d like to steer the conversation to something a little more basic that almost everyone has overlooked: the numbers.
  • On its own, Yahoo is a stumbling Internet giant. But to Microsoft and Google, two of the world’s most powerful technology companies, control of Yahoo has come to represent an unmatched strategic prize. Now the duel over Yahoo, initiated by Microsoft’s surprise $44.6 billion offer last week, has set off a policy and public-relations battle between the corporate rivals that revolves around a simple question: Which company, Google or Microsoft, most threatens to become an Internet monopoly?

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Microsoft offers to buy Yahoo! for $44.6 billion in cash, stock

Microsoft has decided to step it up!  Today, Microsoft offered to acquire Yahoo! for $44.6 billion.  This is a 62% premium over yesterday’s closing price.

Many industry experts, including Scot Wingo, have long rumored that both Microsoft and Yahoo! were both considering acquiring eBay whose battered stock price has increasingly made it an attractive acquisition target.  As recently as three weeks ago, Yahoo! was rumored to be in discussions to buy eBay.

With Yahoo!’s recent challenges, Yahoo!’s stock has continued to slide, and therefore, it has become a more attractive target as well.  Microsoft’s bid is very bold, but to be quite honest, it was inevitable.  Microsoft and Yahoo! have both fallen woefully behind Google in the search game, and they both need to find a way to shake it up.  Today, Microsoft took a leadership position in that effort.

I will do a more in depth analysis in a subsequent post.

Daily Roundup for 2008-01-25

  • From proof of privacy protection to effective testimonials to constructive follow up, here are 8 tips to make visitors feel more comfortable buying from your site. You know that moment when you’re thinking about buying something, but you’re just not sure if you should pull out your wallet? That’s "purchase anxiety." Most people feel it at some point, especially when they’re buying a big-ticket item. Or when they’re buying something over the internet. Online shoppers tend to suffer from purchase anxiety more than offline shoppers. After all, when you buy something over the internet, it’s often a product you’ve never seen before sold by a person you’ve never met before.
  • EBay Inc. said Chief Executive Meg Whitman will retire in March, capping a decade of running the global electronic-commerce pioneer. John Donahoe, president of eBay’s auction business, will succeed her as the CEO.

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Daily Roundup for 2008-01-18

  • Privacy concerns stemming from online shopping rose in 2007, a new study finds, as the loss or theft of credit Privacy concerns stemming from online shopping rose in 2007, a new study finds, as the loss or theft of credit card information and other personal data soared to unprecedented levels. Sixty-one percent of adult Americans said they were very or extremely concerned about the privacy of personal information when buying online, an increase from 47 percent in 2006. Before last year, that figure had largely been dropping since 2001.
  • In 2006, B2C e-commerce sales for the five major markets in the Asia-Pacific region totaled only $59.1 billion, and Japan accounted for a tiger’s share of the sales. But things are changing.

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Google is an advertising cheapskate!

What is the most valuable brand in the world?  Google_logo_2Google is the number one brand in the world with an estimated value of $66 billion according consulting firm Millward Brown Optimor. 
This got me thinking… How did Google become the most valuable brand in the world in just a short nine years?  As the Founder of a consumer-focused internet company, I find this question very interesting.  Conventional wisdom would suggest that Google must spend billions of dollars in advertising every year to accomplish such an impressive feat.

Well after a bit of research, one thing becomes clear… Google is an advertising cheapskate!

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Where Can You Meet the Largest Merchants on eBay?

Pesa_logo Every couple of months, the Professional eBay Sellers Alliance (PESA) pulls together a collection of eBay’s largest, most successful merchants.  These events are always terrific opportunities to meet experienced e-commerce professionals, and to get an insider’s view of how the e-commerce market is developing.  Next week, PESA will convene its sixth PESA Summit in Chicago.

buySAFE has attended every one of these remarkable semi-annual events.  In fact, we have sponsored every PESA event since the organization’s inception, so we are obviously a huge supporter of this organization.

Therefore, I wanted to give next week’s PESA Summit a mini-plug.  If you are a professional merchant or simply interested in e-commerce because you are a member of the media, a financial analyst or a third-party service provider, you should attend this event.  You won’t be sorry.  You will meet amazing folks and get the inside scoop on where e-commerce and eBay are headed.  Christie Hefner of Playboy Enterprises will be giving the Keynote Address.

As a side note, I will be speaking at the PESA Summit on an interesting panel of e-commerce experts including Jonathan Gariss (CEO for GothamCityOnline), Sloan Gaon (VP of Global Strategy for MIVA), and Jimmy Duvall (Director of e-Commerce Products for Yahoo! Small Business).  The Website Design & Web 2.0 panel should be very interesting, and I will provide a summary of the discussion on this blog after the event.

I am looking forward to it, and I hope you can find your way to Chicago for this terrific event.