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4 Reasons to Avoid Yellow Pages Online Marketing Services

Search Optimization

Before the digital age, people would scan through the Yellow Pages whenever they’re looking for a service. Whether they’re looking for someone to repair a certain appliance, or a dress to rent for a wedding, they relied on the Yellow Pages for answers.

As you already know, the Yellow Pages is a telephone directory of local businesses that are organized by category.  

As it was the only reference available then, everyone used the directory regularly to find contact information. It was the perfect place for local businesses to promote their services. And, it was one of the most trusted resources in terms of business listings.

However, as soon as the Internet took over and trumped the telephone as our main channel of communication, the Yellow Pages slowly started to become insignificant. In an attempt to stay relevant, it made an online transition.  

Because the Yellow Pages was able to successfully position itself as the leading resource for finding local businesses and service providers, many automatically assume, especially the older generation, that it remains to be a top platform for business listings.  

Now that it has expanded its services to local advertising, display advertising, web design, and direct marketing, people avail of their services without thinking twice.

Is it really the best place to list and advertise your business, though? Let’s find out!

Who Uses YP.com or The Real Yellow Pages App?

YP.com is Yellow Pages’ website, while the Real Yellow Pages app is its mobile application for helping people find local businesses.

Both are popular among the older demographics.  

For the younger generations whose first instinct is to use Google, Google Maps, Facebook, or Instagram to search for a business online or a service provider near them, the brand Yellow Pages holds no bearing.

4 Reasons Why You Should Stay Away from Yellow Pages Online Marketing Services

Although the Yellow Pages has established itself as the most trusted brand in America when it comes to business listings, reviews and testimonials from previous YP.com customers prove that the company is no longer as effective in advertising local businesses online as it did offline.  

If you’re on the fence about using Yellow Pages online marketing service to advertise your business, what we’re showing below might tell you to forget about it. Find out why:

Expensive Price Points

Even before the Yellow Pages made its way online, the company was already notorious for its expensive price points. However, since it was the only key player in the world of local advertising back then, small and local businesses had no choice but to surrender to their high pricing.  

Fast forward to the present, we’re seeing many reputable online business directories that offer similar or even better online advertising than YP. And guess what? Some of them don’t even charge businesses anymore.  

It baffles our minds when we think about why YP continues to be expensive despite having countless competitors.

YP’s direct marketing solution, for instance, starts at $10,000 per campaign.

Is it because of their brand? Or because they’re good at what they do?

Let’s take a look at what some of their previous clients say.

Screenshot from sitejabber.com
Screenshot from trustpilot.com
Screenshot from trustpilot.com

Based on the reviews above, we can conclude that YP is not at all effective in helping small businesses and local establishments find potential customers.  

They can’t even provide the results or deliver the level of service their customers expect from them based on their brand promise.

Who could blame these angry customers? $10,000 is no loose change for small businesses, and spending it on an online marketing service that doesn’t work is indeed infuriating.

Even the users of The Real Yellow Pages app feel their inefficiency, as shown here:

Screenshot from GooglePlay 
Screenshot from GooglePlay

These reviews are more proof that enlisting your business on YP doesn’t guarantee you that potential customers will find you when they need you.  

It’s pretty obvious that YP uses its brand name to lure customers into signing up with them (even though they’re unreasonably expensive) and making people think that they remain to be the no. 1 trusted brand in business listings and advertising.  

These reviews are enough to tell people that YP’s no longer as reliable as it used to be.

Automatically Enrolls You to Their Print Program

When you sign up with YP, the company automatically enrolls you in its print program, leaving you with no choice but to keep your listings exclusive online.  

You might wonder, why wouldn’t you want a listing in a Yellow Pages phonebook?

Here’s why:

  • They Want You to Pay for Pricey Print Ads

You see, the reason why YP automatically enrolls you in its print program is that it wants you to think that telephone directories are still relevant today. Once you believe that you can get more customers from it, YP will upsell you its costly ad placements.

  • They’re Not Really Free of Charge

The listing fee for the print directory you’re automatically enrolled in costs $259 per quarter. Crazy, huh?

  • Print Ads Are Ineffective

Majority of the population can agree that phone books are no longer necessary, especially now as we’re living in the digital age.  

People can easily search “business near me” on their phones or laptops, and Google will quickly generate a list of local businesses based on relevance and proximity.  

So, what’s the point of listing and advertising your business on a phonebook anymore?

  • They’re Difficult to Track Results or Collect Data

Listing and advertising your business in a Yellow Pages phonebook makes it difficult to track results and collect data on every lead it generates.  

If you’re going to spend money on an ad, you need to know whether it works or not. But when it comes to print ads, it’s just impossible to determine how effective it is - or if it’s even effective, to begin with.  

There’s no metric or system to help you identify the following:

  • Who clicks on your ads
  • When your ads get the most clicks
  • How often your ads get clicks
  • Your overall ROI  

They Prioritize Making a Sale Over Making their Clients Happy

YP’s local consultants are salesmen, and you know what this means? Their priority is not in growing your small business, but in making a sale!


They’re trained to tell you what you need to hear to get you to sign with them, but after that, you’re on your own.  

You won’t get to meet them, talk about what’s important for your business, who your target customers are, or monitor the results of your ads. They won’t even email you a report of your campaign’s progress!

They’ll just send you invoice after invoice without providing any results. The rest is for you to figure out.  

When it comes to choosing the right digital marketing agency for your business, you want to partner with a local agency that has digital marketing professionals you can work closely with.  

This will allow you to talk with them in person. You can arrange to meet them if there’s anything you want to discuss, such as reports and results.

Wouldn’t you be more at ease working with an agency in your local area with whom you can work closely with?

Their Services Can Deceive You

Normally, when your ad appears on the search results and a potential customer clicks on it, they will be automatically redirected to your website or landing page.  

With YP, it’s a different story.  

When you advertise with YP, your business listing that appears on the search results will not redirect prospects to your website. Instead, it forces your potential customers to go through YP.com first before finally arriving at your site.

This makes the entire process of finding you complicated, forcing prospects to abandon the site and look into your competitor.  

People use Google mainly because it can instantly provide them complete answers. They don’t want to jump from one site to another. They want convenience.

If you’re looking for a store or service provider near you, Google will show you a complete directory listing of relevant businesses in your area based on proximity.  

This goes to show that there’s no need to list your business in YP and make the process of finding you complicated. Put your advertising dollars in optimizing your website for local search and Google Ads instead.

Yellow Pages vs. Google My Business

Google My Business (GMB) is a web directory for local businesses. It’s completely free and it even offers easy-to-use tools to help you manage your online presence across Google.  


With more than four billion people worldwide using Google, making a business profile on GMB will no doubt help you generate more prospects.

While Yellow Pages is also a web directory for local businesses, it can be super costly. The fact that it charges you an additional $259 for something you didn’t sign up for is another reason to stay away from it.  

Moreover, leads from phonebooks and print advertising only have a 1.7% conversion rate. But 88% of searches for local businesses on Google result in either a call, visit the business, or purchase within 24 hours.  

Yellow Pages vs. Digital Resource

Digital Resource is composed of team members who are passionate about helping small and local businesses find the right digital marketing solutions suitable for their case.  

We will work closely with you and provide a dedicated account manager who will guide you through the entire process of growing your business online - whether it’s through Google ads, social media ads, search engine optimization, or content marketing.  

The best part about partnering with us is that our campaigns are results-driven. Meaning, we will monitor the performance of your campaigns, make the necessary changes, and provide you reports in an easy-to-read and understandable manner.  

Are You Still Interested in Yellow Pages Online Marketing Services?

There are plenty of other digital marketing services well worth a minimum investment of $10k, and the Yellow Pages online marketing service is not one of them.  

According to their previous customers who experienced their service first-hand, the company is a rip-off and you’re better off without them.  Check out these customer complaints and reviews from the Better Business Bureau.

At Digital Resource, we value your trust. We’ll make sure that every dollar you spend on our services will generate an optimal return for your business.  

Contact us today to know how we can help your small business grow through digital marketing.

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