Don't use YellowBookHopefully someone searching for an answer to the question above will find this blog post and decide against it.  One of my customers built a website with Yellowbook who now has ownership of the domain name.  Before building the website, the Yellowbook Rep assured the customer that if he ever wanted to build his own website they would release the domain name.  What he didn’t mention is that they would do anything possible to make this difficult.
When I spoke with Yellowbook 6 months ago they informed me that they would release the domain at the end of the current contract in April.  When speaking to them in April they informed me they would not release the domain name until 1 year after the website was published.  The rep claimed that the website was published in November so they would not release the domain name until November of 2011.  I have been working with this customer since August of the previous year, and we had been using the Yellowbook website as a basis for the new website.  According to the customer his website has been in operation well before we met, so clearly their records are inaccurate or their “retention department” is making things up.
I asked for him to email and fax a copy of the signed Yellowbook contract before we got off the phone.  We have still not received a copy, so we will have to call again.
If you have any words of advice on how to obtain a domain name from Yellowbook please let me know.  If you are considering building a website with Yellowbook look elsewhere.

Posted In: Marketing, Web Design

4 thoughts on “Are Yellowbook Websites a Good Idea?

  1. Tony Shepps

    I build small websites for neighborhood storefront businesses.
    Yellowbook has flat-out refused to allow a business owner I work with to have his domain name back. I have gone up and down Yellowbook’s command chain on this topic, until they have gone unresponsive.
    This is not just bad behavior, this is illegal behavior in my opinion. Unfortunately the ICANN policy is that they will only consider appeals if the business has a trademark or service mark for their name. Getting one of those is difficult, and usually requires a lawyer.
    I want to take this to small claims court, but I think the business owner will have cold feet over that, if it only means he gets his domain name six months sooner.
    Criminal behavior by Yellowbook. And it wouldn’t be so bad, but the one-page site they built for the guy is terrible. Half of it is Yellowbook advertising itself.

  2. Rich Zimmerman

    Same problems here, too. They didn’t come close to building the type of website they promised me. Actually took all of my notes from an email and copy & pasted them on to the website, then made the site active. How unprofessional. I had spent money on other advertising using my website, and lost all of the advertising and money spent. I even offered to pay for the entire year if YellowBook would release my domain name back to me so I could have the website developed…they refused. Not only did they want to bilk me out of not developing my website and charging me for it, but they wanted me to pay for it without releasing it to me. To this day I get phone calls from YellowBook collelctors using used car salesman tactics trying to get me to pay for something they never producted. To YellowBook: Go to Hell. Go directly to Hell. Do not stop; go straight to Hell.

  3. Pingback: The Next Big Website Scam – Ye Olde Yellowbook

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