Google Local Search: Bad News for Yellow Pages

April 7, 2009

I loathe clumsy printed telephone directories. The information is stale, and I probably consult my Yellow Pages twice, maybe three times a year. When I want a phone number or I need to find a vendor, I look in Google’s directories. Search Engine Journal’s Arnold Zafra wrote “Google Expands Local Search here.” When I read the headline, I thought, “Good.” He provides a summary of an item that appeared earlier today on the Overflight service here, but I don’t do news in this Web log. I point to useful write ups and offer observations. The run down of new features is clear, better than Google’s own happy face style of writing in my opinion. The big news is that Google uses discerned context to refine the search results. Access the local search here. I know it looks like Google Maps but run a query with a zip code to get started here.

Stephen Arnold, April 7, 2009


3 Responses to “Google Local Search: Bad News for Yellow Pages”

  1. Dave Hucker on April 7th, 2009 7:50 am

    Hey Steve. First time to your blog, so howdy. I think publishers (YP) have more to fear from the economy right now than from Google. Most of us local search dweebs will continue to use the geo identifyer until there is some continued measure of reliability in the local search results.

    two other factors in the fear factor (or not) for publishers are:

    1. the big boys have their sites online which (to my surprise) have grown leaps and bounds in usage in the last few years (according to Comscore and Nielsen Online). They all realize they need to be where users are looking (yp practically made that axiom) and as a result have beefed up their online presence and market share by implementing “local search” on their own sites and selling ppc. (true, most aren’t ‘true local’ as compared to geographic targeting, but the use studies show their getting traffic…and traffic sells IYP to businesses.

    2. the baby boomer demographic are the ‘heavy’ users of print yellow pages and will continue to be for the next couple of decades or so.

  2. Stephen E. Arnold on April 7th, 2009 9:30 am

    Dave Hucker,

    Thanks for the visit. Now I have three readers: my wife, my son, and you.

    Stephen Arnold, April 7, 2009

  3. Dave Hucker on April 7th, 2009 1:29 pm

    At least I’m in with a great crowd.

    (I susbscribed to your rss feed)

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