Search drives update of Yellow Pages online — and in print

Search is ‘front-and-centre’ on the new Yellow Pages site 

The Yellow Pages print edition is being reshaped by the way people search in the Yellow Pages online edition.

As Grant Robertson wrote yesterday at reportonbusiness.com, online search behaviour revealed deficiences in the Yellow Pages’ information structure:

When people went to its website to find a sushi restaurant, they typed the word “sushi,” not “restaurants – Japanese” or “restaurants – seafood.”

Moreover, search terms being used online show how customer needs change over time — information that will reshape the print edition of the famed business directory:

…you can already bid adieu to “armouries” and “buttonhole makers” as categories next year. They’re being discarded in favour of breakout terms like “tapas” and “wine cellars.”

It’s also interesting to compare the recently revamped Yellow Pages website with its predecessor. The old site devoted much of its front page to the traditional Yellow Pages directory structure, the “Restaurants – Japanese” approach. Category lists have now been relegated to a small link on a page built around keyword search.

Thanks to the ease of tracking online search terms, the Yellow Pages print edition is set to become a more useful product too.