Yahoo has a new enhanced search page which acknowledges the different types of searches users conduct – “full text,” topical index, yellow page, and news. I tested it out with some absolutely unique marks or mark plus descriptors (VEUVE CLICQUOT, ROLEX, SONY CAMCORDER), some generic terms, and some “common names” (DELTA, ROYAL, LLOYDS). I felt that the “sponsored” hits overwhelmed the web results, sometimes pushing them off the screen. That would be more appropriate for the yellow pages, where users expect display ads to supplement and visually overwhelm the bare bone listings. The yellow page directory was much more effective than a web search engine for local-oriented inquiries such as ARMONK PIZZA. It is still hard to efficiently identify, for example, the places that sell a HP Printer near me.
p.s. Typo-squatting does not appear to be a problem using these search engines.
More info from Yahoo here.