Still Using the Yellow Pages?

I recently came across a really great search marketing article with useful information for local search over at Search Engine Land. The data came from comScore studies commissioned by TMP Directional Marketing comparing this year with last.

The important bits for small business owners wondering ‘how will customers find me?’:

  • The percentage of people using the print yellow pages as their ‘primary’ source to find location business information has declined roughly 2% in the past year, from 33% to 30%.
  • In 2008, search engines surpassed the YP, with 31% of respondents using them as their primary source.
  • Including Internet Yellow Pages and local search sites, the Internet was the choice of over 60% of respondents.

But there’s more good news for local search too. A very high percentage of local searchers follow up with some offline activity:

  • 34% do an in-store visit following a local search, and 29% do so after visiting the Internet Yellow Pages.
  • 38% of local searches are followed by a phone call. And over 50% of Internet Yellow Page searches result in a call.

What Is This Information Telling You?
If you’re a local business looking for local customers, you simply can’t afford to NOT include the Internet as part of your marketing plan. The days of being able to place an ad in the print yellow pages and forget it are over.

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