In my opinion, Yahoo!Shine is simply Yahoo!’s attempt to attract more women and then sell them stuff.
Last month Yahoo! launched Shine, a site focused on the issues they feel women today think are important. Categories include fashion and beauty, parenting, food, at home, healthy living, entertainment and culture, work and money, astrology, and love and relationships. In a recent press release they state the aim of Shine is to “create a better experience for women on Yahoo!” However, in the next breath they go on to admit what this is all really about:
“[Shine] provides Yahoo! advertisers with a single lifestyles destination to reach this coveted demographic. . . the female (age 25-54) audience, which Yahoo! has designated as “Chief Household Officers,” is a highly sought-after demographic for advertisers. It is made up of heavy Internet users, who are frequently the household purchasing decision-makers. Yahoo! Shine creates an opportunity for advertisers to reach this audience in an environment that is relevant and meaningful to women.“
Relevant and meaningful? That is questionable. A blogger introducing themselves on one of Shine’s initial posts explained better than I can:
“I spent a good deal of time on Shine, today. It feels like SOOOO many of the other online, girlie sites. What’s so special about Shine? Where are the sports, stock tips, tech reviews?”
Shine claims they will “avoid all of the buckets that advertisers or marketers tend to put us in,” but I disagree. The site is a bunch fluff slapped together so there is one more place in this universe to sell things. If Yahoo! truly wants to expand the “experience” for their users they will have to come up with something better than this.
Yahoo! needs to concentrate on creating innovative verticals like Yahoo! Finance or the numerous products of Google’s that are skyrocketing in popularity. Until then, don’t sell me a mule and tell me it is a thoroughbred.