Earlier this year, Yahoo announced a spinoff of its stake in Alibaba Group Holding into a new public company called SpinCo. A spinoff such as this one requires that Yahoo also place into SpinCo a legacy ancillary business that it has operated for at least five years. A few days after the initial announcement, Yahoo revealed that the “Active Trade Business” that would join Alibaba in the new SpinCo company would be Yahoo Small Business.
What does that mean for small business owners that rely on Yahoo Small Business tools such as website services and Yahoo Web Hosting, ecommerce through Yahoo Merchant Solutions, and local marketing through Yahoo Localworks?
Details are beginning to emerge, and it looks like everyone can take a huge sigh of relief, as the changes should not negatively impact your experience with Yahoo Small Business, and the gradual changes should make it even stronger.
How the Change Will Impact You
What Will Happen or Is Happening
- All Yahoo Small Business tools will remain at your disposal throughout the transition time
- The completion of the SpinCo transaction should occur in Q4 2015
- Yahoo Stores will get two new features – Coupon Manager and cross-selling
- Yahoo Merchant Solutions will be getting some enhancements
- There is a new partnership with Yahoo Shopping (Market St.)
- There is a new feature called Product Picker added to Yahoo Live Store Badge
- The Yahoo team will continue to explore changes and enhancements that will benefit Yahoo Small Business customers and make the product even stronger
- Yahoo Small Business will move to the new company prior to the completion of the transaction in Q4 2015 and right now they are working on creating a strong transition plan
What Won’t Happen
- No major server or technology changes will be taking place during the holiday season
- No major infrastructure transitions are expected this year
- When infrastructure transitions occur, there should be no downtime for merchants
In general, the plan for the new company demonstrates Yahoo Small Business’s commitment to providing small business owners with reliable hosting and online services. Although many people don’t like change, if Yahoo continues on its planned and strategic course it will mean a stronger platform for small business owners to succeed online. With the major transition not happening until Q4 2015, we will keep you posted on any updates that may impact your small business.