Yahoo! Tests Mobile Marketing

Online portal Yahoo! has launched keyword-based advertising on its mobile search sites in the U.S. and Europe. The company introduced its Mobile Sponsored Search product as a beta service offering advertisers text-based ads with a Yahoo!-created landing page and a console to manage mobile marketing campaigns.

Less than a month ago, online search engine Google began testing ads on its mobile search interfaces in the U.S., U.K., and Germany, signaling a major push to find users for advertisers on smartphones and Web-enabled devices.

Pricing details for Yahoo!’s new cost-per-click service have not yet been released.

“Consumers will be able to click on the sponsored search results to go to the advertisers’ mobile website or a landing page to get more information about the advertisers’ offerings, including the ability to call the advertiser,” says Steve Boom, senior vice president of Yahoo!’s mobile and broadband units.

According to Boom, test deployments in the European and Japanese markets have been very successful, with strong advertiser demand and consumer engagement.

Much like sponsored online searches, advertisers can develop text-ad listings and campaigns for wireless devices and then set the price they are willing to pay when a user clicks on their ad.

Yahoo! offers a mobile Web service on all the major mobile operators in the U.S. and the U.K. The browser-based service provides quick access to a range of offerings, including Yahoo! Mail, Yahoo! Messenger and Yahoo! Search. It also shuttles mobile news, finance, and sports-related content.