During the company's earnings call Tuesday, Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO) CEO Carol Bartz said that she had decided to focus on the properties that generated the most traffic and therefore had the most economic value for the company. The latest Yahoo property that apparently did not fit that description? Free web hosting service GeoCities.
Yahoo is now telling existing GeoCities customers that it will shut down later this year, according to SiliconTap.com. A spokeswoman told paidContent: "We have decided to discontinue the process of allowing new customers to sign up for GeoCities accounts as we focus on helping our customers explore and build new relationships online in other ways." Visitors to GeoCities are now encouraged to use Yahoo's full-featured web hosting service, Yahoo Small Business, which costs about $11.95 a month.
GeoCities is by far the most prominent property to be cut under Bartz. Yahoo bought the service for $3.6 billion 10 years ago and it continues to bring in large numbers of visitors. Compete.com puts traffic to the GeoCities.com domain at 13.5 million unique visitors in March. However, the free service had become somewhat outdated with the advent of free, easy-to-use blogging platforms. A number of other free website hosting services also exist, although GeoCities probably had the most brand awareness.
Since Bartz took the job, she also has cut travel search engine FareChase and its Briefcase online storage service. Yahoo is also reportedly looking for a buyer for HotJobs.
By Joseph Tartakoff