Yahoo! adds search apps for health

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Yahoo! has expanded its Health offering, deepening content and offering three new search apps it says will enable advertisers to better reach target audiences, including through contextual advertising. The changes are part of an effort by the web portal—the third-most visited health destination with 11 million-plus monthly uniques, according to comScore—to cater to pharmaceutical and consumer packaged goods sponsors, which include Schering-Plough (Merck), AstraZeneca and Eli Lilly.

In April, Yahoo! partnered with technology firm Healthline Networks, whose semantic taxonomy powers the revamped portal's new search-specific tools—symptom check, diagnosis search and doctor finder. Yahoo! hopes the applications, added to its editorial content, will lead users to linger on the site and to increase engagement.

“We did our research,” said Damon Cronkey, Yahoo! senior director and regional business leader for Health. “The case for users in those applications is much deeper than for browsing content that's editorially driven around healthy living and lifestyle.”

Among new content features are a library of articles and videos and a set of daily blogs written by medical experts. Health calculators and risk-assessment tools round out the offering.

Yahoo! also became a partner in the Healthline's health advertising network, enabling Healthline advertisers to run their display ads on the Yahoo! Health channel. Being able to target consumers searching symptomatic content is desirable to advertisers, Yahoo! and Healthline say. The technology allows publishers to target by stage in the patient pathway.
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