Home » Local Search

Yellow Pages APIs

Written By: langdon on August 26, 2009 One Comment

Yellow Pages APIs

Facebook and Twitter are getting all of the attention for providing APIs that let developers recreate their services on their own sites.  This strategy has in part led to Twitter’s growth explosion.  So giving away your data seems to work – and neither of these sites has a killer revenue model.

In Canada, my group worked with 3rd party application developers such as http://mypoynt.com to access data from North American Yellow Pages publishers, on a selective basis, but the industry needs to have a streamlined process like FaceBook and Twitter to start giving away their data to smart developers who think they can build a better mousetrap – or perhaps a better way to find a pediatrician?  If this were the case I think 90% of the people I know in the local search/SEO world would spend the next 30 days launching vertical search sites.

Data providers such as Localeze, InfoUSA, IBegin & Acxiom might not be interested in this – they sell their data to publishers, but for any company that has their own proprietary database and their own advertiser base, why wouldn’t this work?  All they have to do is insist that their ads ride along with the content.  Most of the big YP publishers already syndicate out their ads.  This typically requires contracts and negotiations and guarantees and lawyers.  Seems to me unleashing this stuff to the world (perhaps with some screening for quality) might be a bit easier.

The next big innovation in local search is going to come as the publishers that control all of the yellow pages listings data release that data via APIs and let the users come up with cool applications that sit on top of that data.  Right now I think the majority of Web marketers don’t have much of a clue as to the value of local search traffic.  Clicks for DUI attorneys are certainly worth more than those for ring tones.  But if the data is suddenly easily available and new sites start cropping up that appear to be making $, you will start to see even more local search sites than we have now.  This will make for a very crowded field, but if you’re the data publisher and your ads are riding along with the data, you may not care who ranks #1 in Google, as long as the ad clicks belong to you.

By syndicating out their advertisers publishers are already admitting that you can’t survive on the destination site strategy alone.  So why not let others spend the time, money and energy innovating on top of your data to get you the traffic you wouldn’t normally get yourself?

Sooner or later the people sitting on top of all of this listing data are going to come to the conclusion that the data is worth more by giving it away then by keeping it to themselves.  When that happens get ready for an onslaught of really cool local search services.

Other Articles

Digg this!Add to del.icio.us!Stumble this!Add to Techorati!Share on Facebook!Seed Newsvine!Reddit!Add to Yahoo!

Leave a Reply:

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Comment moderation is enabled. Your comment may take some time to appear.

Copyright © 2009-2013 David Langdon, All rights reserved.| Powered by WordPress| Indy Premium theme by Techblissonline.com