As the world continues to digitize, traditional mediums like the Yellow Pages and printed newspapers are losing ad revenue. Businesses are leaping online advertising. The Yellow Pages and its physical counterparts cannot compete.
But is it still worth it to advertise in the Yellow Pages? There might be some advantages for specific demographics. However, it’s safe to say that the days where you need to set aside part of your marketing budget to appear in print have come and gone. Even Yellow Pages has switched to an almost entirely online format.
Now, business owners have a decision to make. Many companies have been advertising in the Yellow Pages and other mediums for decades. When you compare it to other online business directories, it doesn’t have much of an advantage. Is advertising in Yellow Pages worth it in 2021?
Is the Physical Phone Book Worth it for Advertising?
The physical phonebook used to be the cornerstone of American connection. As the telephone grew into popularity, this book periodically delivered to your house was where you got the phone number of everyone in town. The Yellow Pages was where you found the contacts for businesses.
At that time, it made sense to shell out some cash to get a more prominent advertisement there. If your lumber company had the biggest ad, it would most likely get selected when people were perusing the “lumber” section. Now people don’t pick up their phone books nearly as often.
70% of Americans don’t even open their phone books. Only 11% use it for the white pages, and 97% of consumers went online to look for businesses in 2018. So, these books aren’t the hotbeds for potential customers that they once were.
You can see this loss of popularity in the revenue businesses generate from ads in the Yellow Pages. The average annual cost of a decent ad in the Yellow Pages is about $800 and only attracts an average of 80 phone calls. That’s $80 per phone call!
If you think a national ad might have a better return, think again. The average national ad in the Yellow Page will generate about 235 calls per year. But you have to pay upwards of $18,800 ($28/call). That’s pretty expensive considering one Google Ad is $1 to $2 per click, which might generate more sales than a phone call anyway.
Is YP.com Worth Advertising in 2021?
While the physical Yellow Pages might not be the best place for advertising in 2021, the online Yellow Pages has its benefits. The Yellow Pages has evolved into an online listing directory that many small businesses use for advertising.
More than 80 million people visit YP.com, and there are more than 20 million businesses listed. Any website with that kind of traffic is worth considering as a marketing opportunity for your business.
However, compared to other search engines, YP.com might be more like a viral blog in terms of advertising. Take a search engine like Google, for example. Google gets more than 80 million people every day and has pricing options feasible for any business size.
There’s also the high price tag to consider. YP.com starts negotiations at an astronomical price of $10,000. For that money, you can start a very successful advertising campaign and gain organic traffic to your site through an SEO service. That’s a lot more than the “entice potential customers to contact your business” that YP.com advertises.
Is it Worth it to Advertise with Yellow Pages or YP.com in 2021?
The most straightforward answer is no. There are so many opportunities online that are easier to use, cheaper, and significantly more effective. That being said, the Yellow Pages has a couple of benefits:
- Some older demographics that don’t know how to use the internet still use it.
- It’s a part of the over $3 billion phone directory business.
- YP.com has a decent following on the internet.
However, the cons outweigh the pros. We do not recommend advertising on the Yellow Pages.
While the Yellow Pages might be a great source of Nostalgia, it is not the right place for you to put your Marketing budget. It is too expensive for a dying medium. Putting your money into Google Ads or a trustworthy SEO marketing agency is a much more sound investment.