To start off, the lack of usage is occurring primarily in the younger demographic. Nearly 100% of this age group completely ignores the yellow pages, while the older demographic still occasionally uses them.
At the same time, the industry is experiencing a lower sales volume because of search localization. This opens up many doors for the SEO industry, as budgets are transitioning from yellow pages to online marketing.
Two recent filings of public companies were especially helpful in getting an inside look at what’s happening in the industry:
Super Pages – Known as one of the largest yellow page companies, Super Pages experienced a 61.3% decrease in revenue from 2009 to 2010. Additionally, their net profit/loss went from breakeven in 2009 to a loss of $16.83 million in 2010.
Dex One – Producer of dex and dex plus yellow pages, the company experienced a 63% drop in revenue from 2009 to 2010. Additionally, their net loss increased from $435 million in 2009 to $903 million in 2010; they defaulted on $6.9 billion in loans, and they have $6.3 billion in debt.