Most investors assume that competition for Yahoo! (YHOO) and Google (GOOG) will come in the search sector. But, maybe not. The other critical portion of the search business is the sale of contextual advertising, the activity the makes up almost all of Google’s revenue.
Quigo, a contextual ad start-up, offers something that the search companies do not, advertising results from specific websites. The company also allows marketers to put their text ads on specific websites, another product not offered by Google and Yahoo!.
The new company is starting to get the attention of its larger competitors. According to The New York Times: "Google said it was prepared to make changes to its AdSense service that mimicked Quigo’s approach, an unusual step for a company accustomed to mapping the terrain in every aspect of its business."
Quigo may be crushed by the willingness of Google to change its model, but that may make it a catalyst that actually improves Google as an investment in Wall St.’s eyes.
Douglas A. McIntyre can be reached at email@example.com. He does not own securities in companies that he writes about.