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BizReport : Search Marketing : August 02, 2007

Online local searches backed up with printed directory research

Local search grew 40 percent faster than general search this year, according to a new study by comScore, yet print directories still remain a valuable source of local businesses.

by Helen Leggatt

comscore%20logo.gifcomScore's recent research has revealed that local search, using services such as Internet Yellow Pages, is growing faster than general searches on Google, MSN and Yahoo. In just one month, nearly 850 million local searches were performed in the U.S. this year, and the Kelsey Group estimates that this will rise to an annual total of around 30 billion local searches by 2009.

However, the report discovered that consumers are validating online information using traditional printed directories. Eighty-two percent of those using local web searches followed up with an email, phone call, a visit to the store or a purchase.

Overall, the research showed that a third of respondents continue to use printed version of Yellow Pages as their first port of call.

"You have two thirds of the consumers pointing toward online," said TMP Directional Marketing CEO, Stuart McKelvey, via ClickZ. "But when you peel the onion, the print, yellow and white pages are still the number one source for local business. We were very surprised because it was an online panel saying they still use the print yellow pages."

Tags: general search, local search, print directories, Yellow Pages

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