Yahoo! Sponsored Search Mirroring Google AdWords?

Yahoo!’s Sponsored Search platform is getting a makeover, a makeover that should allow paid search advertisers to utilize features currently offered in Google AdWords. The makeover isn’t scheduled to launch until this fall, but it already seems to be slowing down Yahoo!’s advertiser interface; I won’t get into that now though.

With Google holding the title of reigning champ of search engines, it’s no surprise that other search engines are trying to chip away at Google’s share of the pie. But is Yahoo! going as far as mirroring the reigning champ’s search platform? You be the judge.

According to a company announcement, the new Yahoo! Sponsored Search is going to offer fast ad activation. Advertisers will no longer have to wait anywhere from 1-3 days for ads to go through the editorial process; they will go online within minutes. Hmm, sounds a little like Google AdWords to me.

With the new Yahoo! Sponsored Search, advertisers will also be able to test multiple versions of ads against each other. And yes, you can choose to show the ad that performs best more frequently. Need I say who else offers this feature?

Yahoo! also plans to offer Geo-Targeting and Campaign Budgeting for greater control over your advertising dollars. Yahoo will even help advertisers forecast how much money to spend based on the keywords they’re bidding on. Very original.

And finally, Yahoo! will offer a Quality Index for each ad to help advertisers understand how well an ad is performing against a competitor’s paid listing.

To be completely honest I am excited for these changes; I feel that the new Yahoo! Sponsored Search platform will make it easier to effectively manage paid search accounts, but only time will really tell. I just hope that Yahoo! works out whatever kinks are making its interface perform so slow before the new sponsored search launch this fall. And you tell me, is Yahoo! sounding a little too similar to its rival?