Yellow pages revenue increasingly coming from online


The presence of the internet in the modern media universe has been a challenge to all traditional advertiser-seeking venues, and has been a particular challenge to print-based media. A new study notes that yellow page companies are expecting to see considerable benefit from investments in online operations.

According to a report from Simba Information looking at trends for the venue from 2009-2012, it is poised to earn $3.06B from online advertising, representing just over a fifth of total industry revenue. Simba puts the projection at 20.1%.

Yellow page companies see search engines as their primary online competitor, and in some cases are mitigating the competition by entering into agreements with them.

Simba wrote, “The report found that search engines, which have rolled out local search features that compete with yellow page websites, are forming mutual partnerships with yellow page publishers by buying detailed, community based and localized lists and selling local advertising space.”

“Despite the search engine threat, the yellow pages industry is still doing relatively well, having recognized the opportunity in Internet yellow pages a few years ago and invested in online operations,” said David Goddard, lead author of the Simba study. “That investment is now paying off, especially for AT&T Advertising Solutions (St. Louis) and Yellowbook (Uniondale, NY), which are projected to post impressive 21.2% and 18.3% revenue gains, respectively, from online operations in 2010.”

RBR-TVBR observation: Broadcasters take note – this is your local competitor talking. Investment in online and deal-making that turns national competitors into partners are two pages worth taking from our friends in the print directory business.