I am not the type to normally slate another business regarding their services. However, I personally find it exceptionally frustrating to see small to medium businesses being robbed of their well earned cash. In an attempt to grow their business, Yell seem to not have a real interest in how well their clients could do. Put simply, they disregard your potential and want your money.

Yell.com previously known as the yellow pages, offer a wide range of marketing related services to small/medium sized businesses. Here is a little breakdown just so you understand:

Google Ads/Adwords –​ These are the ​ads​ you see at the top of Google search results. They can work wonders for small businesses if done correctly and most marketing agencies will offer a ​PPC service​, so you don’t have to get Yell
to manage it.
Yell sponsored​ ​listings –​ These are listings that show at the top of Yell search results. They let the free listings sit at the bottom while all of the sponsored listings sit and the top. They work averagely, but they tend to be very expensive. The value for money delivered on sponsored listings is more often than not pretty poor.
Website design –​ We have taken on a fair share of new customers in the past who have had sites built with Yell. Their feedback suggested that they always wanted money to make changes and that the platform to manage the website was not very good. That along with their hosting fees which are normally upwards of £35 a month for a site which you don’t actually own and you essentially ‘rent’ from them.
SEO​ – I hesitate to call what Yell offer SEO, but they do have services that at least profess to be a ​cost-effective way to improve your rankings​.

Our Client Story

We have recently taken on a new client who is an owner of a small house clearance company in London. This business had been using Yell for their online advertising for a total of £600 per month on a 12-month contract.
What Yell doesn’t explain to you as a customer, is how they divvy up that £600 and what their margins are:

£400 – Yell sponsored listing
£120 – Google Adwords budget (PPC)
£80 – Google Adwords Management (PPC)

So for any of you that have never done PPC before, a £120 monthly budget is simply not going to go along way. Not only that, but Yell had also set it up so the ads would show for all sorts of irrelevant searches. Here are some
examples:

“House clearance magazines”
“Rubbish Clearance jobs“
“House Clearance worker got shot in london”
“House clearance companies should not have chosen Yell”

When you have a £120 a month budget (£3 a day) and some clicks are costing up to £2.10, your daily budget could very quickly vanish in one or two wasted clicks by people searching for jobs, training courses or anything else that is
completely irrelevant. Not only were their irrelevant searches but ads were running in area’s they did not service, as well as running 24 hours a day 7 days a week. For a lot of  business owners having ads showing at 4am Sunday morning is unlikely to drive business and any clicks are more often than not going to be wasted budget.
All in all, it was awfully set up and truly wasted the money of the business owner. So what did Yell say when he called up to complain that he wasn’t getting enough calls?…’Give us more money’.

I have found a lot of customers with a tainted opinion of PPC due to the level of service that Yell provide, when it’s arguably the best method of advertising for almost all small businesses.

The Numbers

Six months with Yell:

Over the last six months of our clients time with Yell, their marketing had generated thousands of impressions, just over 1000 clicks and around 20 phone calls (less than one per week).

£600 x 6 months = £3600

£3600 ÷ 20 (calls) = 180

£180 for each phone call

One month with Vendo Digital:

We took the client on for a £100 management fee and started from scratch with the campaign. Within 24 hours, his campaign was up and running (correctly this time) and below are the results from his first month with us.

£100 management fee + £250 spent in Adwords = £350

£350 ÷ 23 inquiries = 15.20

£15.20 per inquiry

So as you can see, one month at Vendo Digital has generated more inquiries than Yell did in their last 6 months. And all for £3250 less. We have continued to collect search data optimize the account and the client is now spending
around £11.50 per inquiry, £168.50 less than they were paying per phone call with Yell.

Our Simple Solution

Well, I don’t think you’ll need me to tell you after the above, but simply ditch Yell.com. It’s still good to be listed on their free directory, but don’t bother paying for the sponsored listing or for Adwords. Then with the £600 that Yell
usually charge, have a think about how you should best spend it. Here are some ideas:

Spend £350 on an AdWords campaign and save £250

Spend £600 on an AdWords campaign and really see the difference

PPC advertising done correctly whether is on Google or on Microsoft is likely to be extremely effecting and I would say the best solution out their for small to medium business’. It’s undeniable that most consumers turn to search engines when looking to purchase. Unfortunately, I am a strong believer that the demise of Yell.com is looming and it’s only a matter of time before we see the downfall of what was once a great company when running the Yellow
Pages.

Reduce Your Spend, Double Your Results

Here at Vendo Digital, we offer a range of small business packages for PPC, SEO, Social Media & Web Design​. Our PPC management starts from £100 per month and our small business SEO packages start from £150 per
month.

Ultimately, we hate to see small businesses being stung by companies like Yell. Trying to find affordable and quality marketing for a small business can be extremely difficult, but that’s where we like to help. If you currently use Yell to manage your advertising or are considering using them in the future, feel free to give us a ​call or send us an email​ and we will be more than happy to give you some advice and see how we can reduce your spend and improve your results. We are a company who cares about your business!