Is Yahoo Gaining on Google?

 |  Includes: GOOG, YHOO
by: Wayne Mulligan

Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) has been knocking the cover off the ball for the last three years – showing increasing revenues, profit margins and market share gains, quarter over quarter.

The company can't be stopped ... or can it?

The company that really started it all, Yahoo! (Nasdaq: YHOO), is on a mission to topple the search giant and reclaim its crown as the king of the Web.

Some people are skeptical. They think that Yahoo! (YHOO) just doesn't have what it takes to reach the scale and success of Google (GOOG) in the search advertising business.

But this writer thinks that "some people" are wrong. Let me tell you why:

First, in a recent study by, Yahoo! has shown to consistently get higher click through rates on its search results. Meaning, if you go to Yahoo! and type in a search term, you're more likely to find a result that strikes your interest than on Google. This essentially means that Yahoo!'s search results are getting to be more relevant than Google's.

Now if this study is accurate and Yahoo! can start delivering better search results, the company will also start to get a larger share of the search market, which means a larger share of the search advertising business.

And while Yahoo! continues to gain a larger share of the search advertising market, the company is also monetizing its searches better with its new Panama program. This was Yahoo's response to Google's successful AdWords program that has made it the runaway success story of this decade.

Is Yahoo! a Buy Right Now?

As far as buying the stock right now, I still see some risk.

For one thing, Google isn't a competitor to be taken lightly, as we all know how well they've executed in this space.

But more importantly than that, Yahoo!'s stock price is approaching a long term resistance level of $30 - $31 per share.

However, if the stock breaks that level on significant volume, then I'd be a big buyer with a price target of roughly $40 per share.

Definitely keep an eye on this situation, because I certainly haven't written Yahoo! off yet, and neither should you.

Disclosure: none