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SEARCH NEWS: Yell partners with Thomasglobal to take on Google and Kellysearch

Yell has launched the first specific B2B section of its online directory, aimed at manufacturing or industrial users, via a new partnership with US-based industrial directory specialist Thomasglobal.

The new search facility - on the bottom left hand corner of the Yell homepage ( - is part of a first wave of more targeted directory functions to be developed over coming months. Consumer-focused Food & Drink and Shopping sections have also been added.

Industrial Results provides access to Thomasglobal's database of 600,000 business and industrial suppliers, and almost three million product listings.

Eddie Cheng, president of Yell, says the service is very much a win-win for both parties, enabling Yell to access Thomasglobal's database, whilst enabling its partner to gain a foothold of the UK market in exchange.

The industrial service increases Yell's ability to compete against both Google and Kellysearch as a research tool for business products and services; an area where it has previously been weak in terms of usage. "We are always looking for new opportunities to increase coverage," comments Cheng. "Yell is in a very strong position in the work environment. Significant numbers of our users visit between 9am and 5pm, and many of these are at work."

Cheng says Yell is focused on tailoring its offering to make it more appropriate to different users, including business decisions makers. "We envisage a basic Yell homepage and different vertical portals. They could each have a different look and feel."

The Industrial Search function went live at the end of October with little fanfare and no marketing support. Cheng denies that this is a test site, suggesting instead that it is a phased implementation. "We will spend the two months up to Christmas understanding its usage, and then up the ante in January. Traffic levels have already been in excess of what we were targeting."

Cheng denies that this initiative is an attempt to take on Kellysearch, which is strong in the industrial sector.


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