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Goodbye Yellow Pages...FOREVER!

Goodbye Yellow Pages FOREVER,yellow pagesWhere are your Yellow Pages?

When was the list time you used them?

When was the last time you conducted a Google search and found a result from ANY Yellow Pages on the first page of a Google SERP (Search Engine Result Page)?

And the first page is ALL THAT COUNTS.

"Why is that?" you ask.

Consider these statistics from Cornell University:

  1. The first two results on page 1 get up 50% of the attention of viewers and the #1 listing gets clicked on up to FOUR TIMES as much as the #2 listing.
  2. The last listing on Page 1 is 2.5 times more effective than being the last listing on Page 2.
  3. The top 5 listings get 88% of the click traffic from a search.
  4. The top 3 listings get 79% of the click traffic from a search.

When will the Yellow Pages die? It will take awhile because the Baby Boomers that own businesses think that's how to advertise so I expect the Yellow Pages to be around until the last of the Baby Boomers retire (willingly or forcibly).

Besides, the Yellow Pages salespeople are quite adept at instilling FUD (Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt) in the minds of gullible, desperate, naive business owners when they respond to the client wanting to shift their funds from trees to the screen, "Can you afford to have no clients for an entire year if you're wrong?" (Queue the sound of the top right hand desk drawer opening, the business owner sighing, the pen clicking and being put to a company checkbook for yet another, albeit smaller yellow pages ad and a faint, yet noticeably-louder-than-last-year toilet flushing.)

(As I'm writing this [in early 2009] I had this dialogue with my 11 year old son, "Matthew, have you ever used the Yellow Pages?" He said, "The book? Ah, yeah. Once or twice I think." To which I asked, "Have you ever done a Google search?" With rolling eyes, a bus-stop laugh (you know, the "PSTCH") he replied, "Plenty of times.")

Being almost 40 (WTH?) I can say the last time I used the Yellow Pages was to conduct prospecting training for clients just to prove a point. So I know without a doubt that our kids will only know Google and online searches to get their questions answered and to find local vendors and suppliers. And that trend is working its way up the demographic age scale at an accelerating pace.

The "We" generation is back in power and they have technology at their finger tips that will tell the world how you fooled them and it will appear online before they leave your parking lot. So you best do what you say you're going to do.

But first they have to find you.

If you'd like a little help getting found let me know.

Happy New Year.

If you need more help growing your sales, check out the following resources scattered around this site and a few others I operate, such as:

Good Selling,