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Forbes.com gets into vertical search game

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By Carol Krol

Online business portal Forbes.com is the most recent company to get into the vertical search game. New York-based Forbes.com announced the launch of a vertical search engine dedicated to enterprise information technology products and services. The deal is possible through a partnership with IT.com, a relatively new vertical search entrant specializing in information technology resources.

The search engine is powered by IT.com, and the search box will be located within selected technology channels and section pages on the Forbes.com site. It is found on five of the seven technology channels and three of the five business tabs.

Forbes.com President-CEO Jim Spanfeller said the new search function enhances its overall publishing platform. "Our users are leaders of change within their own industries, and so IT.com and other such tools allow us to stay ahead of the curve by making each visit to Forbes.com ever-more relevant, profitable and rewarding," he said.

IT.com uses a proprietary algorithm to search sites that are relevant only to enterprise IT and returns results based on the market presence of vendors in the space being queried. The partnership helps build reach for the vertical site, which went live a few months ago. "It enables enterprise technology users to genuinely shop online," said Mark Cordover, CEO, IT.com.

"The network we’re creating will enhance reach for our partners and the advertisers," he said. Its site sponsors are a "who’s who" of high technology companies—Microsoft Corp., IBM Corp., Intel and Oracle, for instance. IT.com handles paid search in addition to its sponsorship deals. While Forbes.com is its first partnership, Cordover said, it would not be the last. He is pursuing deals with several media partners in both the general business and niche enterprise IT areas. "We’re in discussions with many other media companies to expand the network," Cordover said.

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