AOL Picks Google as Best Agent To Serve its Search Needs

In a fairly surprising decision, AOL announced today it will sign a new five-year partnership with Google that’s aimed at providing AOL users with a better search and search ad experience.

Although there had been talk that the new deal might go to Bing, Microsoft (MSFT), Yahoo or a number of other companies, AOL CEO Tim Armstrong said in an interview with Boomtown last night, “We have tried to make a deal that has 100 percent alignment on what we each do best…at the end of the day, Google checked all the boxes.”

It probably didn’t hurt that Google already has an excellent grasp on the way AOL search performs and is therefore in prime position to improve upon it.

AOL and Google have been partners since 2002, but this new contract is an expansion on the three it replaces. It includes a broad range of features designed to improve and develop the products and services available to AOL users. The deal includes search products, advertising products, mobile search, greater YouTube presence and a more global focus.

This means that not only will AOL users have improved searching capabilities and more relevant ad experiences, but AOL content will also be more prominent on YouTube and will be better programmed. In addition, AOL will be renewing its focus on mobile apps and will work with Google to better cover mobile search. Because the alliance between the two companies is international in scope, it should bring an improved experience to AOL users worldwide.

This deal is bad news for Bing, Microsoft, Yahoo and other companies who are trying to expand their influence across the Web. However, it’s great news for Google, and it’s obvious the search engine superpower recognizes that.

According to Eric Schmidt, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Google, “We’re excited to deepen our partnership. This agreement combines Google’s expertise in search and advertising with AOL’s strength in online content. It’s particularly exciting to see our relationship expand into video and mobile. These areas are now at the heart of users’ online experiences and at the core of both of our businesses.”

Information hasn’t been released yet on when the new contract changes will take effect, but AOL customers worldwide can look forward to exciting changes in their overall user experience.

*Image provided by Global X on Flickr.

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