Yell's transformation story

What we do hasn’t changed, just the way we do it

Press release

1st September 2017, UK – Yell, the leading provider of managed digital marketing services*, today announces the final print cycle of Yellow Pages, marking the company’s full transition to a purely digital business. The first of the 104 final editions is being distributed in Kingston in January 2018, with the final ever edition distributed in January 2019 in Brighton, back where it all began.

Yellow Pages was first published in 1966 and for many years has been a popular way for consumers to search and find local businesses. Yell has been the champion of local business for over 50 years and is well known for its iconic advertising, including the famous J.R. Hartley campaign.

Richard Hanscott, CEO of Yell said: ‘‘After 51 years in production Yellow Pages is a household name and we’re proud to say that we still have customers who’ve been with us from the very first Yellow Pages edition in 1966. How many brands can say they’ve had customers with them for over 50 years?”

Following the rapid growth of digital and social media, Yell has transformed into a digital business – helping businesses and consumers be successful online. Launching a new pledge, Yell is committing to help a million businesses be found, chosen and trusted by more customers online by 2020.

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Richard Hanscott

Richard Hanscott, CEO

Richard joined Yell in 2011 and has led the business to become a leading provider of digital marketing services to SMEs in the UK. He has extensive knowledge of the IT & telecoms sectors, and building successful consumer and B2B organisations.

Before joining Yell, Richard worked in senior roles at businesses including NEC, Orange & Hewlett Packard.

Yell's transformation story

Yellow Pages: Our final editions


Yell is No. 1 for managed digital marketing services for all types of local businesses in the UK

*Source: M-Brain 2017, #1 in terms of revenue from sales of managed digital marketing services



1966 - General Post Office first publishes a classified section called Yellow Pages in the Brighton telephone directory
1973 - Yellow Pages Directories rolled out
1987 - Yell begins its digital offering with Electronic Yellow Pages
1996 - The first iteration of the business directory website launches
1998 - Yell starts offering its customers website build and digital advertising services
2009 - PPC advertising & video creation services added to Yell’s product portfolio
2010 - Ratings & Reviews launches
2014 - Yell websites are mobile adaptive
2015 - Yell app for Apple watches, Yell Stores and Connect (free listing checker) launches
2016 - Yell launches Facebook Social product. Custom websites & SEO launches into Yell Digital Agency channel
2017 - Yell launches their Pledge: ‘Yell is championing local business by helping a million small businesses be found, chosen and trusted by more customers online, by 2020’

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Sarah O'Rafferty
Head of PR

1. Alexa Internet Inc. Website rankings August 2016
2. Yell internal statistics