Monday, February 13, 2006

Search Engine Optimization Now to be a Factor in the YellowPages

Now search engine optimization will affect your yellow pages listings as well:

The Canadian YellowPages are about to launch a new service that will do keyword searches of your web site. Results will be displayed in the YellowPages directory based on the content in your site and in combination with how much you are paying them.

The following information is directly from YellowPages, in response to my evaluation of advertising options for our company:

How can we show up in searches for "internet marketing" "email marketing", "web analytics", "content management system", "Search engine optimization"? eg: do we get to apply keywords to our ad.

YELLOW PAGES: Interesting that you ask because in the not to distant future (June) we are changing the layout of our site to incorporate keyword searches. Those searches will return results of businesses that mention those keywords (in the text of their ad, but also in their websites when linked from the Yellow Pages site).

The important thing to note here is that the results will be re-ranked based on advertising that the business currently does in order to ensure that if someone is for example a national advertiser that they are in fact appearing ahead of someone who is not (even when keywords are used). This will ensure that the value of those products does not diminish in anyway as a result of this more user-friendly interface.

This bodes well for the search optimization industry. It further legitimizes the field and will help it bring the concept into the forefront of advertisers minds. After all, search engine optimization - done well - is really just the perfect classification of your business, the content on your web site, and the linkage to your site.

If your company relies heavily in YellowPages advertising, you should treat this as a wake up call rethink your online marketing. Search Engine Optimization has now become an important factor in your YellowPages advertising.

The YellowPages are still an important method of advertising your business. While SEO is a powerful tool for bringing in traffic and customers, you also need to promote your business where all of your prospects are looking. Our prospects look in the search engines, in the online yellow pages, in the yellow pages book, or ask friends for referrals. We know that - and promote accordingly.

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