Is There Any Value in Getting Links From Directories

Today’s post is answer to a question from Curedream:

Is there really any value in getting links from the Yahoo directory

I’m going to move that up a bit and tackle directories in general.  In my opinion, yes, there is value in getting your website listed in some directories–but not all. The trick is figuring out which ones matter most.

IMHO there are four directories that every website should try to be listed in: Yahoo, Business.com, Botw and DMOZ. Three of those are require an annual review fee. DMOZ is free; however, getting into DMOZ is considerably harder than it used to be.  I recommend submitting and not obsessing over it if you don’t get in.

You want to be in these directories because they help with your link profile and give you a good base to build upon. They also help provide a bit of relevancy and context for the search engines (see this interview with Greg Hartnett of BOTW for more information).

Once you get beyond the top tier, are there any directories that are worth being listed in? It depends. First, you want to navigate to the directory page you are likely to be listed on, copy that URL, and search for it in Google. Look for the cached date to see when the page was last crawled. The longer it has been, the worse it is: anything over 45 days is trouble, anything over 75 days is a real danger sign. Work your way back through the directory 1-2 levels, checking the cache dates again. Look at the pages themselves. When was the last time they were updated? Unless you have an obscure topic, you want something that was updated recently. Type in the title of the page you will be on and add the word “directory”. Does that page show up in the SERP’s? Look at the directory with services like compete and quantcast to see how much traffic they are getting (remember these services are estimates).

What you are trying to do is get an idea of how important the search engines think the directory is, how likely they are to crawl your link and give it credit, and how much traffic (if any) the directory is likely to send you.

What are some second tier directories you should look at:

Aviva, Directory Journal, Gimpsy, GoGuides, Jayde,  JoeANT, RubberStamppedSkaffe, Uncover the Net, Web Beacon, Wow Directory.

You should also try typing in your keyword or vertical category + the word “directory” to look for specialized vertical directories. Be on the lookout for low quality directories and don’t waste your money.

Lastly I would stagger your directory submissions. Don’t lump them all into one month just to cross off your to-do list unless you are an already established website with inbound links. If you are new, spread them out over 3-4 months starting with the most important.

Disclaimer: this post does contain some affiliate links and links to current and past advertisers. I would have linked to them anyway, so go look somewhere else cause these aren’t the droids you are looking for.
photo credit: greeblie

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