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Canadian Small Businesses Losing Potential Clients and Sales Due to Inability to Keep Business Info Current in Digital Space

 

Montreal (Quebec), May 12, 2015 – Eighty percent of Canadians have been unable to connect with local businesses due to inaccurate or outdated information in online or mobile searches at some point in the past 12 months. A recent omnibus survey commissioned by Yellow Pages, a leading digital media and marketing solutions company, concluded that Canada’s small businesses are losing potential clients due to their inability to keep their basic business information updated across the current digital ecosystem of websites, mobile apps and social media platforms.1

The same poll revealed that on a yearly basis, over 285 million digital searches for Canadian businesses result in incorrect information. As a result, over 15 million Canadians affirm that their plans or purchase intentions were negatively impacted, in the past 12 months due to inaccurate information turning up in their searches.

To help small businesses bridge this digital gap, Yellow Pages has developed and launched a new digital offer, dubbed PresencePro, designed to help them keep their contact information and business details standardized and up to date across all relevant websites and mobile applications.

“Consumer traffic continues to fragment in the digital space. The number of websites and apps that now drive local business information to various audiences grows every minute,” said Nicolas Gaudreau, Senior Vice-President and Chief Marketing Officer of Yellow Pages. “A 2013 poll of our customer base showed over 90% of our clients were concerned about their ability to keep their business contact information standardized and up to date across all relevant digital properties. Small businesses have neither the time nor the resources to manually ensure they are present everywhere in the digital space or even determine their starting points for each individual website or app. As a result, their business information remains incorrect or outdated and may be causing them to miss opportunities to acquire new customers.”

PresencePro is an automated listing information syndication service built by Yellow Pages specifically for small businesses. It provides a single-point of entry designed for businesses to update their business information, opening hours, contact info as well as rich content such as photos and videos. Once this is submitted, PresencePro will automatically syndicate the content to the Yellow Pages PresencePro network of digital properties and partners.

“PresencePro was created in direct response to small business needs and is another solution Yellow Pages can offer to help bridge the existing digital divide between Canadians and Canadian small businesses,” continued Gaudreau.

Canadian digital usage remains the fastest growing in the world, yet Canadian small businesses struggle to keep pace. According to Statistics Canada’s 2013 Survey of Household Spending, the average Canadian household spends $58,592 on goods and services each year, or $161 each day. If consumers cannot find or contact businesses which can fulfill their purchase needs, then that spend will be directed to those they can locate. Accurate and updated business information at all potential customer points of entry is a crucial element to attracting customers and growing business. According to the Yellow Pages omnibus poll, 97% of Canadians feel the responsibility rests with the business to ensure their business information is kept updated and current.

The top three business information elements most often found to be outdated were hours of operation, address and phone number, followed closely by outdated descriptions of the businesses products or services.

The Yellow Pages PresencePro partner network includes all Yellow Pages owned properties and over 40 additional digital properties including: Foursquare and Google My Business. The collective traffic of the PresencePro network is approximately 40 million visitors each month.  View a snapshot of the network.

Network Snapshot.jpg

PresencePro represents the second new digital product or service that Yellow Pages has brought to market in 2015 as the company accelerates its digital transformation with an emphasis on servicing its small business clients. Approximately 55%, or $450 million, of Yellow Pages’ total annual revenues are derived exclusively from digital products and services.

Findings at a glance:

80% of Canadians looking for businesses via an online or mobile search have been unable to find them due to inaccurate business information in the past 12 months.

Over 15 million Canadians confirm that their plans were negatively impacted by inaccurate information on businesses during a digital search in the past 12 months.

Each year, over 285 million digital searches are conducted which result in inaccurate or outdated business information.

Business information most often found to be inaccurate: hours of operation, address and phone number.

Over 90% of small businesses are concerned about their ability to maintain accurate business information across all pertinent digital properties.

97% of Canadians feel it is the responsibility of the business to keep their information updated across all potential websites, apps and social media properties.

About Yellow Pages
Yellow Pages (TSX:Y) is a Canadian digital media and marketing solutions company that supports local economies by helping neighbourhood businesses reach new customers and foster stronger relationships with existing clients through its various media and products. Yellow Pages holds some of Canada’s leading local online search properties including YP.ca™, RedFlagDeals.com™ , Canada411.ca and YP NextHome. The company also holds the YP, YP Shopwise, YP Dine, RedFlagDeals and Canada411 mobile applications and Yellow Pages™ print directories.  Yellow Pages is also a leader in national digital advertising through Mediative, a division of Yellow Pages devoted to digital marketing and performance media services for national-scale agencies and customers.

1 Survey results were obtained for Yellow Pages through Ipsos Online Panel with 1,005 interviews conducted among Canadian adults (April 24-27, 2015). Margin of error for the total sample is 3.1% at a 95% confidence level.

Contact:
Fiona Story
Director, Public Relations and Corporate Communications
514-934-2672
fiona.story@yp.ca

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