Yandex developed and implemented a new method of machine learning — MatrixNet. This technology was a real breakthrough, taking into account a far greater quantity of search factors and their combinations to significantly improve search quality.
Playing with cities
Yandex began giving names to new search platforms. Each new name started with the final letter of the preceding one. “Arzamas” came out in October, providing search that took into account the user’s region in 19 large cities of Russia. By the end of the year, a new platform was ready — “Snezhinsk”, which took the region into account in 1,250 cities. It was succeeded by Krasnodar, then Reykjavik, and so on. This fun with city names lasted a few years.
Yandex began working in Kazakhstan. All of Yandex’s main services were represented on yandex.kz — Yandex.Mail, Yandex.Maps, Yandex.Auto, Yandex.Timetable, Yandex.News, and Yandex.Market. The search engine understood the morphology of the Kazakh language and showed local sites in response to “local” queries. Users could choose whether to get their search results in Russian or Kazakh.
The first regional commercial office opened in Yekaterinburg. Later the company opened such offices in other regions of Russia, allowing it to get closer to its clients. The commercial offices were tasked with helping local advertisers work with Yandex products.
Despite the financial crisis of 2008, contextual advertising on Yandex grew by 14%. The company’s share of the contextual advertising market was 78% at this time. The number of ad displays exceeded 20.3 million per month by the end of the year.