netmeg - 12:42 pm on Jun 8, 2012 (gmt 0)
For transactional sites, I think some kind of contact info is important (and obviously so)
For information sites - I don't see that it's always necessary. And even if it were, it wouldn't change my own policy on it.
Do I think they directly influence ranking? Not at this time. But it probably influences user engagement, and that has an effect on ranking.
So indirectly - yes, it probably helps. But I still think it's not going to be enough that you will notice. If your other trust and authority signals aren't there, a phone number isn't gonna help.