Thursday, February 18, 2010


Yellow Pages refer to a telephone directory of businesses, categorized according to the product or service provided. But Today, Yellow pages are more than just contact databases. They act as an effective bridge between consumers and service providers. While customers can find and locate appropriate shops, advertising in yellow pages can draw more and more customers to a shop. They are seen as effective publicizing and showcasing portals.

With the advent of Web2.0, internet based directories or databases have become more and more popular. Internet has added a lot of features to yellow Pages. Dynamic databases, interactive route maps, user recommendations and Search optimization are some of them.

The next step to optimize the use and utility of telephone directories is to bring it to mobile platforms. This is simply because mobile communication is replacing landline phones almost everywhere [reference]. While we try to bring yellow pages effectively on mobile phone, we have a lot of examples, a lot of issue in those examples, a lot of new thoughts and a lot of challenges ahead. Well!! We do have planned our way.


Primary Research/Literature Study:

  • Reading about all the existing mobile directories/databases –, m-yellow pages for Singapore, etc. These  examples differ in many aspects:

Users, they deal with

Markets, they are made for

User Interfaces and also

Technology, Platform they are built with

  • Figuring out the revenue systems associated with each service (as it may affect the design)
  • Figuring out the technology behind working of these applications- exploring various platforms
  • Studying other similar services like Just dial, that may serve as an alternate to Mobile directories
  • Previous research in similar projects, their methodology and research findings

Secondary Research/Field Study:

It’s important to understand the context we design for. Secondary Research would include:

Ethnographic study of the Indian markets, users and shopkeepers.

  • Understanding the markets

Markets in different countries or different places may differ in:


The way they are organized or grouped in a location (product wise, revenue wise, etc.) or they may be random

Nature of shops (may contain single or multiple kind of products, wide or close price range, branded and local products, wholesale or retail, etc.)

Browsing through the market (infrastructure)

  • Understanding the customers (buyers)

People in different economies and societies may differ in:

Preferences (correlation between Quality, Price and location)

Societal relations

Belief in Trust and recommendations

  • Understanding the Shopkeepers

Shopkeepers may differ in:

Nature of information offered for a product

Emotions and societal relations


Expenses (infrastructure, duty, tax, location, transport)

Building User Persona(s):

Working out what kind of users (depending on income, age group, location, etc.) would use our application.

Building scenarios:

We would consider different scenarios for shopping.


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