ABOUT WEB DIRECTORIES
“You could spend thousands on your website hoping for business. But until someone links to it, your site might as well be invisible, because it will be an uphill battle to get ranked in the search engines.” Heidi Richards Mooney
Listing your web site in online directories have numerous benefits. Informative decisions must be made when choosing between submitting a site to a paid or free web directory. Whatever your choice, ensure that your website conforms to all required norms: complete, detailed, user friendly, and distinctive.
The options are many and stem from two main categories: free directories and paid directories.
A free directory can be a great way of getting back links. Your site will likely get listed on a PR3 or PR4 page. With most directories, your site could get listed within a few days or it could take a month or more. And because they are free sites, its possible that your listing never shows up. There are several free directory options such as the popular open directory project known as DMOZ or other free directories like JoeAnt.
Apart from main directories there are niche directories that are created for specific segments of the population which can include broad industries such as law, medical health, women-owned and even as specific as alternative medicine, so on. Remember, every listing will add to the website’s Google PageRank and free directories sometimes provide a steady rate of referral traffic. Many free directories have editors who do the vetting for no remuneration; this allows the directory to include hundreds of sites at little or no cost. Directories like DMOZ are used by Google and other search engines as databases; which means that your web site could automatically be listed in several major search engines and directories.
A paid directory is one that offers premium service such as faster approvals, enhanced listing options, premium placement and even additional promotion. Most paid directories deliver higher quality traffic because there is less competition . Less crowded than free directories, your site also stands a good chance of being listed on a higher PR page. Some directories like Yahoo charge a fee for considering a site for inclusion. This cost is offsets the costs associated with more attention to individual listings such as reviewing your site. There is also often a recurring fee associated with the listing, which can be paid monthly or yearly. Other sites charge a one-time inclusion fee. The costs to list sites in paid directories can vary from US $ 10.00 to US$ 299 annually and/or recurring – the fees depend on the number of “benefits” offered and the popularity of the site in the search engines.
Whether you should opt for a paid submission or list your site in free directories will depend on your budget and your goals.
Here is a quick checklist for you to use when deciding which online directories are right for your business.
* Consider your goals.
* Determine how much immediate exposure your website needs.
* Is there time to wait for a free inclusion or would you benefit from a quick paid inclusion?
* Is there budget provision for paid inclusion: pay-per-click or recurring yearly expenses?
* Do you have time to assume the role of a reviewer and vet your directory before a free inclusion?
* Or, would it be more feasible to pay for a professional editor to review the web site?
* Learn how each directory is organized and what its guidelines are.
* Surf the net and find out where your competitors are listed.
Make a working plan and choose the type of directories that will benefit your overall goals. And don’t be afraid to list your site in as many directories as you have time for. A virtual assistant can often help with this task and you can spend your time doing other necessary tasks to promote your business.
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(photo source: Unsplash.com)