September 2000, The Kelsey Group (TKG) wrote about how online vertical
directory AllPizza.com was working to steal advertising share from
the printed Yellow Pages in one of the medium's most important categories:
pizza. As it turned out, Yellow Pages publishers need not have worried.
AllPizza.com, which allowed Internet users in Reno, Nevada, and several
other test cities to order pies from a handful of national chains,
was short lived.
2000, numerous vertical digital directories have suffered the fate
of AllPizza.com. Yet many have survived and emerged as important aggregators
of local business content. Monstermoving.com, for example, launched
in October 2000 to serve the 42 million U.S. residents who relocate
every year. The site offers a "one-stop shop" to address consumers'
moving, real estate, mortgage and home-improvement needs. The company
now attracts 1.2 million monthly Internet users (thanks, in part,
to an aggressive search engine marketing program) and is using a pay-for-performance
pricing model to grow the number of advertisers on the site.
the most widely known vertical success story is the Travel category,
with sites such as Hotels.com, Expedia, Travelocity, Orbitz and many
others. Together, these and other travel verticals have transformed
the travel business.
vertical directories span a broad range of categories. And by specializing
in one area, vertical directories are able to supply a deep well of
localized content from business contact information to details
on merchants and products while funneling well-qualified prospective
customers to advertisers. One could argue that many of these verticals
more efficiently facilitate that buyer-seller interaction than traditional
a five-year-old vertical that enables car shoppers to research and
find used and new cars online, is a case in point. The site is visited
by millions of users each month and now includes the inventory listings
for more than 40,000 U.S. car dealerships. In addition, a 2003 J.D.
Power & Associates survey shows that about 30 percent of Internet
car shoppers find the vehicles they ultimately buy on AutoTrader.com.
like many of those mentioned above have gained considerable traction
in the marketplace. But what is the future of these directories, and
how will they affect traditional offline local media, as well as online
media such as Internet Yellow Pages (IYP), classifieds and search
engine marketing? For example, what impact will the embrace of pay-per-click
(PPC) advertising by many vertical directories have on the potential
revenues of Overture, Google, FindWhat and others as search engines
move more aggressively into the local and small-business markets?
report addresses and seeks to answer these questions. In doing so,
it provides a detailed look at verticals in the legal, health-care,
auto, shopping, real estate/relocation, home-improvement and restaurant/entertainment
categories. It also offers in-depth profiles of leading Internet properties
within these key vertical segments.