Local Search has changed. Take a look at the following graphs.
A picture is worth a thousand words… in this case it might also be worth $$$ Thousands of Dollars $$$
Are you advertising where the traffic is?
As you can see, search engines are taking local search searches from internet yellow pages sites and local directories. Increased competition in the local search landscape or industry fragmentation has also created a challenge for the IYP (internet/interactive yellow pages) and local search directory listing providers.
Local search traffic is now in the hands of social media sites, mobile browsers, and Google/Facebook Places. Check-in sites like Gowalla and FourSquare are also going to help connect with the who, what, where, and when…. something the phone book companies just don’t get! Even companies like Local.com are growing in marketshare, while traffic and marketshare to Yellow Pages sites like SuperPages.com and other IYPs keeps declining. They can’t use the “more people to distribute rule here.” They, like the print companies, are failing to compete with mobile and social media!
Recently a few bankrupt Yellow Pages publishers sent letters to clients disclosing information regarding previous contracts and commitments. Does this permit them to no longer follow SIZE & Seniority commitments to yellow pages clients?
Did you know that to curb massive revenue losses, as consumers have shifted away from print yellow pages phone books, the yellow pages industry is now offering ad seniority placement buyouts?
When Bell South began publishing mini-books other publishers quickly followed suit. When one does something… so does the other? Let’s not hope so!
Rumor is post-bankruptcy yellow pages directory publishers are considering offering “select clients” the option of jumping phone book directory placement (old contract agreements that outline size and seniority guidelines) with new “display ad placement buyout options”.
Seems like they will do anything to earn a buck, huh?
How can you trust a organization who fails to keep promises clients regarding these advertising investments. They made a commitment to the client that the ad they purchased would be placed by size and seniority from the date when the contract is signed. The print yellow pages industry has held the “decrease your ad and lose your discounts” AXE over clients heads to persuade clients into keeping ads for many years. Is the Yellow Page industry selling products or services? Is the pricing fair? In my opinion the yellow pages industry needs to stick to products… not services. Search Marketing service requires fulfillment and constant attention, something the print industry has very little experience in vs local advertising agencies.
Yellow Pages sites are attempting to become the local resellers of Google advertising. As a local search marketer, I don’t think the long contracts that leave little recourse and zero cancellation options in the event the Phone Book Companies PPC Management campaigns are not performing to expectations. In my opinion this is another means of continuing to grind the axe on cancellations. Without flexibility and a diverse offering (product portfolio) they are going to have continued issues with client churn.
Did you know that when you place advertising on Google’s AdWords interface, not only do you own the work produced when hiring a local search marketer, (I do not recommend signing a 12 month contract , considering Google does not require such a contract to advertise) you also are able to see what changes your account manager and “PPC coach” made to your campaigns
Next topic for Today:
Google Maps vs Yellow Pages searches:
Here is the graph continued and combined with Searches for Yellow Pages companies:
Who hasexperiencedthe greatest and/or most rapid decline in the Top IYP (Interactive Yellow Pages) & local search brand sites?
I will go ahead and state my prediction: Yellow Pages Print usage will be less than 24% of Local Search by 2012! That means the phone books of 2005 (that were over 70+% of local search product or service queries) are now less than half as popular as they once were as a medium. (yet more phone books exist today than ever!
Do you think it is time the phone book publishing industry adapt to OPT IN vs a very misleading OPT OUT method? What are your thoughts? Take my poll!
“Your Dallas Local Google Guru”
BTW, Webformance Inc. will be offering call tracking to all clients. If you want to track your phone book, direct mail, email, Google, Video, Business Card, or other advertising investments and see which ones are really bringing the calls….. all you need to do is call: 214-267-9553!
“You can’t manage to get the best advertising if you can’t measure what advertising efforts work!” – Mike Stewart the Local Dallas Google Guru
I am a local Dallas Google advertising consultant for companies located in D/FW and small and medium-sized enterprises needing affordable and transparent local search marketing
From 2000 to 2009, I worked for Verizon Yellow Pages / Superpages.com as a new business sales strategist and advertising consultant. After a questionable spin-off and then bankruptcy, I left the organization to become an entrepreneur.
I created a start-up internet marketing firm for small to medium-sized businesses serving the Dallas area.
Any views expressed on this blog are not necessarily shared by my company or employer. Particularly the views related to SuperMedia / Idearc (my former employer) the Yellow Pages publishing industry, saturation distribution of phone books, or political related discussions.
I offer proven, tested, and verified local Search Engine Marketing advertising strategies to folks in Dallas - Fort Worth who are looking for honesty, results, a good value and accountability.
Do not hesitate to ask me SEO/PPC related questions. I have a true passion for Local Search Marketing.
I am also a Board of Directors Member for the Dallas Fort Worth Search Engine Marketing Association. Join Me for Our Next Meeting at http://www.dfwsem.org
call me: 214-267-9553
or email: dallasSEOguru@gmail.com
*I promise to respect your privacy while posting on this blog.