google adwords vs yellow pages


When it comes to promoting just about anything, one major decision you’re going to have to make is exactly what sort of promotional tool you’re going to want to use.

Here are some things to note when deciding between Google Adwords and Yellow Pages when it comes to choosing where you put your advertising dollars. Here some good ways to figure out the Google Adwords vs yellow pages dilemma.


Skip Print - But is Google Adwords Worth It?

Obviously, there’s more to consider than just print ads when it comes to advertising on Yellow Pages since they do have an online presence.

However, advertising in the print version of the book is going to be largely worthless, even if you have a highly local business.

That ship has sailed, and few people use the Yellow Pages that way anymore, especially if you’re trying to reach audiences that aren’t over 60.

The only way you might want to consider it is if you’re marketing highly local and the product you’re advertising will be relevant for a marketing demographic that will likely really despise technology generally.


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Pay Attention to Traffic

Google has a huge amount of traffic compared to, and this is worth noting.

It doesn’t mean that Adwords is going to be better than Yellow Pages in every single instance, but it does mean that if you’re trying to reach the widest number of people possible and you aren’t worried about money as much, Adwords is the obvious choice.

The Yellow Pages site will have way fewer search terms available as well, underscoring this dichotomy.

However, it’s worth noting that people on Google are there for a hundred different reasons, whereas those who go to are looking to buy things specifically.

So, your click-through rate is going to be way higher for Yellow Pages, ten times higher, in fact. This means that if conversion rate is a serious concern for you, YP may actually be the way to go.


google adwords vs yellow pages


Using the Yellow Pages Advantage for Those in the Middle

One possible advantage for the YP site is that it has a lot of brand recognition. For example, some older users who finally give up on avoiding the Internet and technology will go to their computer, and then they’ll have to decide how to find the information they want.  

If they’re used to finding information through the phone book using the Yellow Pages, then this could very well be what they search for first when they are just starting out with the new tech.

As a result, if you want to target older people just getting used to new tech for the first time, this could be the way to go. Google search results will show the results of you specific targeting efforts.


Watch Out for Yellow Pages Hard Sell

There are some reports that Yellow Pages tend to use some hardcore tactics when convincing clients to buy advertising, including exaggerating a few facts.

For example, some say that they will tell potential ad buyers that their services won’t be searchable on the Internet at all if they don’t buy advertising from Yellow Pages, which is clearly not true.

This could indicate a strong approach to trying to get your advertising dollars. If you’re someone who doesn’t like this type of highly bold approach when dealing with the company directly and using lots of ad dollars, it could be enough to make it advisable for you to turn you away from their service.


Check Yellow Pages Filters

There seems to be a known flaw for the Yellow Pages site where you can search based on city when using the geographic filter, but searching for zip codes often doesn’t quite work.

The recommendation is to use these filters and advertise here if you have many multiple locations inside of a city that you want to use.


listings filter


Review the Mobile Apps

The consensus is also that Google has a better mobile app, and that, in fact, the Yellow Pages app, which is called YP Connect, owes a lot to Google.

This means that if a user is looking for something on Google, they can select a entry done through this app.

Obviously, this means that this is a bit of a roundabout way to get your message out there to consumers, and all things being equal, you’re better off with Adwords since otherwise, you have to hope that lightning strikes twice with consumers going both through Google and then through Yellow Pages.


Choose Based on Specialization and Speed

Overall Adwords is a solid bet considering the power of Google, but it’s possible YP could work out if you’re focusing on a specialty market where what you need most of all is conversion rate since this is an area that can favor Adwords of considering the average difference is a 5% conversion rate for Google versus nearly 50% for

Obviously, this doesn’t speak to how effective it is cost wise since the cost is generally done per click, but if speed matters to you, it’s possible you could get those click-throughs and potential sales faster with the higher conversion rate at YP.

This appears to be one of the major reasons to go with YP over Google, since there are plenty of other reasons to go with Google Adwords instead, including the fact that YP actually pairs with Google for advertising half the time anyway, and that YP sometimes has a shaky reputation when it comes to delivering on their promises in a way that does not come across as overly pushy or exploitative.


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Online marketing takes work but can show a much better ROI in the long run. Adwords is worth pursuing over yellow pages advertising these days because of the sheer volume of people that prefer searching online.

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