Yellow Pages Display Ads BasicsDisplay ads in a print Yellow Pages directory need to grab readers’ attention, then turn them into customers in a matter of moments. Yellow Pages advertising designers think in terms of a four-step process:

  • Attract attention and interest
  • Inform about the specifics of the business
  • Motivate the customer to choose the business
  • Provide the Contact Information to get the customer on the phone or out the door right now Here’s how successful display advertising in the Yellow Pages pushes each of those buttons:


The headline and sub-headline should give the reader a clear and specific message about the benefit your business provides or what’s unique about your business. Example: “Your On Time, Every Time, Electrician”. Or headlines may emphasize the business’ specialty or location: “Westside Bankruptcy Attorney.” Don’t use the business name as a headline unless it gets these kinds of messages across.

The ad’s messages and images should target customers so they understand immediately that this business is for them: residential or commercial, luxury or bargain.

Images can also back up the benefits by showing happy outcomes: a model with a gleaming smile for a dentist office or a manicured backyard for a landscaper.


Yellow Pages advertising should list the specifics of the services offered and the products for sale, including the brands if relevant. Lists can be set up with an introduction: “Full range of repair services, including…”

It’s important to give the business location or service areas and delivery areas by name.

List the business hours. Be sure to promote emergency or 24-hour service.

Give the financials: Insurance accepted, financing available, credit cards accepted, etc.


A directory display ad needs to make the customer trust the business enough to move forward on the purchase or to schedule an appointment.

Key phrases might say the business is family owned or locally owned, and give the years in business. It’s also good to list professional licenses or certifications, awards, guarantees, warranties or bonding. Other descriptive language should talk about the superior qualities of the business: “dependable,” “reliable,” “masters,” “pros.”

Images of the business owner looking straight ahead at the camera or a group photo of the friendly staff are like an introduction: Here’s who will be serving you. Images of uniformed repair personnel are also reassuring about a business that makes house calls. Give an extra push with text about special offers, such as free estimates or free delivery.


Set up your contact information with a call to action: “Apply online or call,” “Request your free quote.”

Phone numbers are a must, of course.  if you have separate numbers for each store or service area, emphasize it.

If digital contacts are important, the ad should list your website and email address. QR codes are a popular way to connect to customers or clients with smart-phones. Here’s a guide to how to use QR codes for your local business. .

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