What are Online Directories? “A web directory or link directory is a directory on the World Wide Web. It specializes in linking to other web sites and categorizing those links.” Wikipedia. (Think the Yellow Pages.)
What Does This Look Like?
Click the link in at the end of this paragraph to see a sample directory search for caramel candy in Chicago. Note links to local retailers and their locations on a map. Google local information on caramels
Get Started Links
Submitting To Directories: Yahoo & The Open Directory SearchEngineWatch.com One page covering three topics: preparation, submitting to Yahoo and submitting to Open Directory.
Tips for Getting Listed in Directories Grantastic Designs One page with 8 directory submission strategies.
Major Directory Submissions
I’m giving you a leg up by providing direct links to website submission forms. Some are paid and some free.
The Big Daddy of Directories
Again the links below are to information about what that particular online directory offers and how to get listed.
DMOZ “The Open Directory Project is the largest, most comprehensive human-edited directory of the Web. It is constructed and maintained by a vast, global community of volunteer editors.personally reviews all submissions,” Submit your listing here because other directories use this information to compile their directories. Because humans review the listings, it takes time.
DMOZ list of business directories To locate and submit to directories in your industry or subject area. and their list of small business directories. Getting listed in industry-specific and trade directories is critical if you sell to businesses, not consumers. For example, if you’re a printer selling specialty service to other printers, you want to be in printing directories and Thomas Register.
There are numerous directory websites. Below are links to some major ones. Some are free but others require payment. Your time, budget and market will determine the number of directory listings you maintain.
InfoUSA (does Yahoo Yellow Pages and Ask.com listings)
Local “Review” Website Listings
Typically these are websites where consumers and patrons submit reviews, comments and feedback on local businesses. A business owner may correct and expand the basic listing for free, and also enhance it for a fee. Here’s the Wikipedia on how Review Websites work.
Get Listed in the Major Directories 2createawebsite.com
Get Listed in Google, Yahool and Live (MSN) 2createawebsite.com
Internet Marketing Directory Submission for Link Popularity Pixeo? Shows you an example of manual directory submission, and suggests using a browser add-in to automate the process.
Links to auto-fill FireFox addons that this video discusses
More auto fill downloads from Download.com
Related topic: Submitting to Search Engines
Submitting To Crawlers: Google, Yahoo, Ask/Teoma & Microsoft’s MSN SearchEngineWatch.com
Related topic: Local Search (This goes beyond local directories to local search engine optimization)
Local Search: How to Totally Own Google PowerPoint slideshow by Adam and Laura Alter
Getting Found in Local Search SearchEngineWatch.com
Peg’s Experience with Online Directories
I have spent the last year and a half trying to get listed in DMOZ. I suspect I’m having trouble because SCORE Chicago has 4 domains which refer to www.scorechicago.org, and they don’t like mirror sites. But these are not mirror sites. After writing this post, I’ve submitted my info again and put a date on my calendar to appeal if I get no results this time. Beyond that, and because SCORE Chicago is a nonprofit, I’ve mostly concentrated on getting links from chambers, government agencies and partners.
I also have purchased a Yahoo directory listing for another business. I got an initial bump in hits, but that was all.
However, for most small businesses, I should think directory listings, especially free listings, would be an excellent and cost effective marketing strategy. For local businesses, there are many free and inexpensive alternatives.
What’s your experience with directory listings and review sites? Please talk to me in a comment.
See all my Delicious links on Online Directories
See other posts in my Online Marketing Series, which has 20 link-rich posts on 18 online marketing techniques.