If you could have a link on Google or Yahoo, who would you choose?

According to SEMRush, Google.co.uk had 29.5 million unique visitors in June 2013, compared to 268k on Yahoo.co.uk. If you had the marketing budget, would you advertise on Yahoo’s homepage, or would you be willing to spend the extra to be on Google’s, taking into account that the cost was proportional to the extra 29 million visitors?

If you decided to have a link on Google, you could be making a costly mistake with your marketing budget. Let me explain why.

Yahoo is an information portal. Users don’t just go there to search. They’re just as likely to read the news or check out the latest change in their stocks and shares, which is all viewable from the home page. On the other hand, the main reason to visit Google is to search for a piece of information that’s hosted elsewhere on a third party website.

The intent of a user on Google is more likely to be of an academic nature or consist of someone wanting to find a quick answer to a brief question. This means that a typical user on Google will do a search and leave again just as quick, clicking on a third party website and totally bypassing your advert in the process.

Millions of more visitors might seem like millions of more potential, but the majority of Yahoo visitors are going to be business minded and actively seeking info on Yahoo itself, therefore being more engaged to where your link is displayed!

I hope this has given you some food-for-thought when it comes to considering your next link building programme or affiliate scheme. Beyond traffic levels, think about the intent of the people using the site and what type of engagement is being generated. Is it a good match for who you want to be attracting to your own site?