Yahoo Answers is commonly referenced as a top social media site for small business owners. Its strength comes from its ability to help SMBs establish authority by answering questions related to their niche while, at the same time, taking advantage of Yahoo’s large user base and number of eyeballs. Last week Yahoo Answers became an even stronger outlet when it announced several major changes to its search feature to help users and small business owners get more from the site. Here’s a look at what’s changed and how you can take advantage of it to market your business.
Creating a More Fine-Tuned Search Experience
Yahoo has really powered up its search feature to help small business owners find the most relevant questions and discussions. Search results can now be filtered by relevance, newest/oldest or fewest/most answers. They’ve also added a number of fine-tuning options so that SMB owners are only seeing the most relevant discussions. Targeting filters now include:
- Ability to filter by “tied answers” in the Question status dropdown
- Ability to filter by number of answers
- Changed the time options available in the Date Submitted dropdown to give you a greater range of options and to include a filter for the “last 24 hours”
- Advanced Search: Create and save filters to search by keyword match in all Q&A, Questions or Best Answers; category; location; status (Open Questions In Voting, Tied or Resolved Questions); number of answers; and date submitted. You may also create searches using Boolean search terms.
New My Saved Search Page and E-Mail Digest
Yahoo Answers has enhanced its Saved Search feature, now offering a My Saved Search page to help users and SMBs keep track of saved searches. There are a number of new features being added, including real-time updates and Yahoo trending topics, so I recommend you head to the Yahoo! Answers blog to check those out.
If you like to be notified of things via e-mail, Yahoo! Answers will soon launch a Digest E-mail that will e-mail you the top three questions from your Saved Searches every day. This is a great way for marketers to monitor and stay abreast of questions they’ll want to respond to in order to build their own authority and presence.
In all, what the new features allow small business owners to do is better monitor around the keywords they’re watching. As a small business owner, you want to be monitoring Yahoo Answers for questions coming in about your industry, especially when they’re local in nature. Doing so allows you to be seen as the authority on your topic, and bring in targeted customers when someone in your area has a question about what you do. The new search refinements, saved searches and even the e-mail digest are all tools to help you find and respond to the discussions most relevant to your business.
If you haven’t already, do check out the Yahoo! Answers blog post for complete information on all the new features and upgrades. Yahoo! Answers is a great source for both new customers and content ideas for your Web site. Give it a try.
Thank heavens. The search function was always a disappointment for me considering how much great information Yahoo Answers has.
Does anyone really use Yahoo Answers for small business support? I’m really pleased to see the enhancements and use it for personal stuff about my family, health, etc. But I’ve found OnStartups or Outright much more useful for questions about my business; with their focused audience of SMBs.
I’d be interested to know who actually uses this on a support level too. Since all I do with my life is IT support for entrepreneurs, I’ve always thought Yahoo Answers was a bit of a joke…I’ll give it another look…but thoughts are welcome.
Thanks for this helpful update. Yahoo is a very popular tool for small business owners. i use it a lot and looking forward to these new changes.