WhitePages Now Does Yellow Pages

As I wrote at SEL, WhitePages.com has always offered “business search.” However the data have come from yellow pages publishers in the past. The company finally decided to build its own database of local business listings last year.

CEO Alex Algard told me that WhitePages did tons of work on the data (some of it manual) and he believes the company now has the most accurate and complete database of local business information available online.

Along with today’s announcement of local business search, WhitePages is also offering a new store locator feature that is nicely streamlined and effective as a tool to find . . . well . . . store locations.

Even though the listings data are not from YP any longer, ads on category searches still are.

Though not flashy (so to speak) the site is making money hand over fist with text ads, display and distribution partnerships. Its mobile apps have also done very well and WhitePages offers a premium reverse phone number lookup/caller ID service that’s $1.99 per dip or unlimited for $2.99 per month. CEO Alex Algard said this service has performed well, although he didn’t share specific numbers.

Though the site is clean and the data are reportedly very accurate there’s not a ton there beyond name, address & phone number — and some functionality built around that information (e.g., “get directions.). I asked whether the site was going to attempt to add more content of one sort or another. I got a mixed response: NAP lookups are the bread and butter at WhitePages, but the company is considering ways to enhance content especially in high volume vertical categories.

The store locator feature, in particular, came out of WhitePages’ own query logs. They saw lots of lookups for store locations so they built the tool. It could imagine this easily turning into a stand-alone iPhone app with deals, etc.

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