A pioneer in keyword advertising on the Web. Founded in 1997 as GoTo.com, Pasadena, California-based Overture Services was one of the first Web search engines that included relevant ads on the results page based on the words being searched. If the user clicked an ad, the advertiser was charged the amount it bid for placement. The amount was also displayed, allowing competitors to bid more and move higher on the results page.
In early 2003, Overture acquired the AltaVista and AlltheWeb search engines (AltaVista was one of the first search engines on the Web). In late 2003, Overture became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Yahoo! and was renamed Yahoo! Search Marketing in 2005. See keyword advertising