Practical Ecommerce

Paid Search With Online Yellow Pages

You are probably familiar with Google AdWords, Yahoo! Search Marketing, and MSN AdCenter, the three largest paid search advertising opportunities. However, have you considered running a paid search campaign using the online yellow pages? Even if you’re an online retailer that does not have a physical location, you could benefit from running ads on the online yellow pages. Let’s take a look at five online yellow pages sites and their pay per click advertising programs.


Five online “yellow page” sites is one of the biggest online yellow pages. It currently boasts over 100 million searches every month. With, there are several options as an advertiser. If you have a physical location then it’s important to make sure that your location(s) are listed. Basic listings are free. It also offers “Priority Placement Advertising,” which gives your business the highest possible exposure. Another option, though, is its YPclicks! program, which allows you to pay one source a fixed monthly fee for clicks; your ads appear on the search engines using local targeting (geo-targeting). In this case, if you’re already advertising on any of the major search engines, you would not want to pay extra for additional PPC advertising that would potentially interfere with your current Google AdWords or other pay-per-click ads.

A search at allows you to identify many different yellow pages websites, including, (mentioned above),, and I recently performed a search at for shoes. I live near Dallas, Texas, so I searched for shoes in Dallas Texas. The search results were served up by, and the sponsored results (the PPC ads) come from There were several PPC advertisers or “sponsors,” most of them being online retailers that did not necessarily indicate that they were in the Dallas, Texas area. In this case, although I searched at, the PPC ads are from

Superpages seems the best

That brings us to, one of the largest (if not the largest) online yellow pages sites that allow advertisers to pay directly for clicks. As you recall, your PPC ads on show up on the search engines, not on the online yellow pages websites. And even the other yellow pages websites display PPC ads. has four main options for businesses. Online business listings are free. They also offer pay per click, pay per call, and websites (they will create a website for you). The PPC and pay per call will most likely be the best option for online retailers. The PPC option allows you to target certain geographic locations and set a monthly budget. The minimums are $15 a month and $.20 cents a click. They provide a unique “max price calculator,” which is helpful even if you are not paying for ads on because you can use the calculator to determine how much you can afford to spend per click.

There are other tools at, including a way to “view your competition” by entering a keyword and your zip code. There’s also a ROI calculator, which allows you to calculate your return on investment for pay per click advertising, including costs, sales, profits and your return. Pay per call is also an option, especially if your ecommerce business has a call center where customers can call to place an order.

As you can see, there are a few options when it comes to paid search on the yellow pages websites. However, has the most tools you need to be successful as an online advertiser.

Bill Hartzer

Bill Hartzer

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  1. Legacy User June 19, 2008 Reply

    I can find out a distinctively unique category of Yellowpages sites in Visitthebest which is highly constructive for upcoming parents….

    — *Best Yellow Pages Websites Guide*

  2. Legacy User June 23, 2008 Reply

    These are all great sites that can stimulate local commerce.

    Why isn't Intellectual Property an issue?

    It seems to me that there are some real value in patents that have real solutions to local interactive sites. Many of these properties seem to be stealing these ideas from patents without any regard to ownership.

    What's up with that?

    — *W Austin*

  3. Legacy User June 25, 2008 Reply

    W Austin, I realize your frustration. Shouldn't the patent owner be policing and watching out for their own patents, though? I mean, wouldn't the patent owner have a legal battle ahead of them?

    I'm also seeing various yellow pages (superpages, etc.) show up in the search results for many local type search phrases (especially on Google), so it would help to also be listed on that page that ranks well, as well.

    — *Bill Hartzer*

  4. Legacy User July 9, 2008 Reply

    Bill, & idearc/superpages provide backfill to google local (maps and business listings) and are partners so they are possibly a silo/source for blended/universal. I don't care for the superpage listings (grossly overpriced!) but the PPC conversion is better and platform/tools are preferred over Yahoo! and Ask. I found the PPC to be less expensive then the listings. I thought the PPcall model was also overpriced. I was doing Pay day and the PPCall was more expensive then my cost/conversion on Google.

    The .Ca Yellowpages are very innovative with great voice search. They seem to show up more in the Google .Ca Index then the US sites.

    — *Terry Van Horne*