Since the Bing/Yahoo merger, Yahoo’s ad system has been in a serious state of turbulance. While it’s never been on par with AdWords, there was some value to be had in certain verticals.
In what we’d call a bold move, Marissa Mayer and company have launched Cost Per Lead ads, in a bid to earn some income in advertising apart from the Microsoft deal on normal PPC ads.
The new format won’t be sold in the auction-style pricing like you might be used to with normal pay per click ads; the pricing will be set depending on the size of the advertiser and the vertical that advertiser is in. One ad per search results page is the plan for now, and if you’re not the only competitor in the space, the higher ranking advertiser shows up (who knows how that’s determined).
The supposed upsides are higher click-through rates, verified leads, and prominent positioning on the page. You can have up to six fields in the ad itself, and customize your “thank you” text that’s displayed after the form is submitted.
Yahoo has had a disappointing time in the ad space since the Bing merger. Perhaps this is just the thing to pull them out of the slump.