Many SEOs use Yahoo! Site Explorer in addition to Google reporting to monitor website performance. It’s invaluable in determining the number of web pages that have included within Yahoo’s index, revealing the number of backlinks to pages, and submitting and tracking feeds. It also allows you to delete URLs, alerts you to crawling problems and shows you the top 10 queries to sites. But all that will soon be over as Yahoo is going to pull the plug its Site Explorer later this year.
On 24 March this year, Yahoo announced that Bing was taking over its organic search listings. In fact, at that time, Yahoo’s listings in the US, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Australia and New Zealand were already powered by Bing. The transfer was in the process of being rolled out across the rest of the world. Yahoo advised all users to familiarise themselves with Bing’s Webmaster Central so that they wouldn’t be caught unawares.
In an official Yahoo blog published on 8 July, Yahoo stated: “Once organic results are transitioned to Bing in all the markets, we plan to shut down Yahoo! Site Explorer and Microsoft’s Webmaster Tools will be the source for Bing and Yahoo! webmaster site and analytics data.”
To this end, Bing Webmaster Centre has been working furiously to ensure that it’s able to provide even better reporting information than Yahoo Site Explorer. But whether they’ve been successful has yet to be determined as details on what features will be available have yet to be released.
Yahoo has cautioned SEOs in countries other than those that have already made the transition to keep on using Yahoo Site Explorer to receive organic traffic data. At the same time they’ve said that it’s no longer necessary for SEOs to optimise websites differently for Bing and Yahoo as Yahoo will conform to Bing’s requirements.
But that doesn’t mean the end of Yahoo, as the blog states: “Although the organic results will be powered by Microsoft Search platforms, Yahoo! will continue to innovate on the search experience beyond the services delivered by Microsoft. In order to provide Yahoo! users with an amazing search experience, our slurp crawlers may continue to selectively crawl websites to help support these efforts.”
The APIs will be shut down on 15 September this year, and many SEOs believe that that’s when the transition will be complete.