As I have previously mentioned in an earlier post the integration of Google search results into Yahoo! Japan seems to have been completed. The image below depicts a particular search term with the Google results on the left and Yahoo! Japan results on the right hand side.
Japanese SEO’s will be interested to note that the results on both sites show a perfect match.
As further confirmation that the integration may now be complete, Yahoo used to show “Search Results provided by Yahoo! Inc.” in the footer of its search result listings, however that has now been removed as can be seen from the below listings.
Even though the above results do show a perfect match, Yahoo has previously stated they will customize their search results to meet individual user preferences and such search results would be different from those presented by Google. Perhaps they were referring to the shopping section of their search results.
For example, if you search for “Digital Camera” in both Google and Yahoo!, for Google they will have Google Shopping listed in their search results and for Yahoo!, Yahoo! Auctions will be displayed. Even though the integration seems to be complete, neither Google nor Yahoo! Japan have confirmed this.
The result of the integration is that Google now has more than 90% of the search market in Japan, and for natural search results on Yahoo! Japan, the results generated will be powered by Google. Therefore, Japanese SEO has become a lot easier in that you only really need to do optimization for Google’s search algorithm.
On the flip-side, make sure you use legitimate SEO methods as any penalty on Google in Japan will cost you dearly in ranking performance, as Yahoo! Japan is no longer the dominant search results provider.