I am a Hopeless Nerd and It Saved My Client 700% in Their Online Advertising

The Email I got:

Hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

YP (Yellow Pages) is contacting me for our yearly commitment. Please give your opinion on the following.

Silver listing with 5 headings on line

Physical book — credit card size ad in yellow pages full color

for $199.00 month

My Reply / How I Saved My Client 700%

Hi [Client]!

Thanksgiving was great. Just a bit colder up here :), but nice to be closer to family.

Okay, I need to begin by saying that every once in a while I get a reminder of what a total geek I am. One came on Tuesday when I was totally overjoyed to get my 2016 World Almanac (geek city). A second was the sheer joy I felt at being able to go through your website data to really answer your question about my opinion on the YP package you were quoted.

I’ll be brief first, then give you other info in case you want to see how I came to my conclusion:


The silver listing quoted is a total waste of money.


If you purchase this package from YP you will be paying 710% more for the same service you already get from paid Google Ads.


From Dec 3, 2014 — Dec 3, 2015 you got 54 visits to your website from yellowpages.com

The visitors spent an average of 1:33 minutes on the page. That’s a pretty good indication that they were looking to buy something and did not just get to the page by mistake.

Last point, It looks like the bulk of your traffic seems to have decreased between Dec 2014 and Dec 2015 ( I attached a little chart, I am a hopeless data nerd). However, the decrease may be seasonal (i.e. people are looking online for plumbers more often in Dec, Jan, and Feb, than in the summer.

Sooo, bottom line:

YP is asking you to pay $2,388 for approximately 54 website visitors / year, or approximately $44 / click.

We had ads running on Google during the same period (Dec 3, 2014 — Dec 3, 2015)

Those ads cost a total of $2,978 during that period

They generated 479 visitors to your website who spent an average of 1:23 minutes on the page (virtually the same amount of time as the YP folks)

That’s a cost of $6.22 / per visit.

Sooo, YP is asking you to pay $44 / visit to your site when you are getting the same thing for $6 / visit from Google.

In case you were wondering, in addition to the 479 who came from paid ads and 54 who came from YP, you had 1,978 who came through a standard Google search (i.e. they did not click on any ad).

Final word of caution: there are two key pieces of information I don’t have here: 1) which visitors became actual paying customers; 2) How much each of those customers was worth to your business. We can address this for 2016. Let me know if you’d like more information on that.

All the best,