Mayer’s reforms boost web traffic at Yahoo

Yahoo! Inc. attracted more U.S. visitors than Google Inc. during July for the first time since May 2011, indicating that turnaround efforts by chief executive officer Marissa Mayer, a Wausau native, are gaining traction.

More than 196 million Web users spent time on the largest U.S. Web portal’s sites during the month, up 21 percent from a year earlier, ComScore Inc. reported. That’s 4.3 million more than Google, operator of the world’s most-popular search engine, up less than 1 percent. The report did not include Tumblr, which Yahoo bought earlier this year, or mobile users, ComScore said.

Mayer has been pushing Yahoo’s developers and designers to make improvements to the Sunnyvale, Calif-based company’s products and services since she was hired in July of 2012 from Google. She revamped Yahoo’s home page, e-mail and weather services with sleeker designs and other improvements. More users will lead to better financial results, she said in July.

“Hire and retain a great team; build inspiring products that will attract users and increased traffic; that traffic will increase advertiser interest and ultimately translate to revenue,” Mayer said on a call with analysts. “People, then products, then traffic, then revenue.”

However, Yahoo’s second-quarter revenue, minus sales passed to partner sites, fell 1 percent to $1.07 billion and also missed analysts’ estimates of $1.08 billion.

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