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  • Building Link Popularity with Directories

    There are hundreds of QUALITY web directories on the internet today. If you don’t know what a directory is exactly – a directory is simply a categorized list of websites sorted by topic. As an example, visit www.dmoz.org and you’ll find a number of categories on the home page and hundreds of sub-categories for each category as you dig deeper into the website.  DMOZ is a good example of what a quality directory should be – and it’s free to submit to. But, there are hundreds of smaller directories online where you can submit your website for free as well.  Once you get your website listed in these online directories, your website can get free traffic and other benefits – such as permanent one-way backlinks, which can help improve your website’s search engine rankings.

    Benefits of listing your website with free quality directories :

    – Provides permanent links, which improves your link popularity. Once your website is listed in a directory, it’s there to stay.

    – Improves keyword relevancy for your website with “themed” submissions and targeted anchor text

    Directory submissions allow you to get links from related pages.   For example, if your website is related to real estate, your directory submission will only be approved if you submit your website to real estate directory, or at least a real estate category within a general directory. This means that links to your website will be from relevant pages only, and search engines prefer links from topically related pages.

    – Can replicate natural link building, if done correctly.

    Suppose you’re a webmaster, you have a website and you like some other website and you link to it on your website so it can help you and your visitors. That’s called natural link building. In other words, “a natural link is a link someone pointed at your site/page from his site on his own will.”  When you submit a website to a directory, an editor reviews and approves it, thinking that website will be beneficial to visitors of that directory. So in that respect, directory links are literally like natural links.

    – Gain targeted visitors from the directories themselves.

    Remember the old days before search engines? We used to browse directories like Yahoo to find websites that we were interested in.  While even though search engines are more popular with users today than directory listings – people still use online directories to find relevant websites.  By listing your website in quality directories you can expect to receive traffic from the directories as well as search engines.

    – Builds one-way links. There’s no need to link to other websites.

    Usually when you want to build links and want a backlink from a particular website, you’ll have to trade links with them or pay for a permanent backlink. However, directory links are free and permanent without any reciprocal link exchange needed. If your site is a quality website, most directory owners will be happy to link to yours simple for the asking.

    – Permanent results for a one-time investment.

    Whether you’re submitting your website to directories yourself or hiring a directory submission company, it’s considered a good investment.  For a one-time investment of time or money, you’ll receive permanent links which will help increase the visibility (and popularity) of your website for years to come; it’s well worth the investment.

    What types of directories are recommended for website submission?

    There are literally thousands of website directories, though not all of them are worth submitting to because some of them are low-quality and will not garner any benefits whatsoever. However, here are some traits of high-quality directories:

    Directory having some quality standards to submit/approve listings – Avoid submitting your website to a directory that approves EVERY website that is submitted to it. In these types of directories there is almost no quality standard, and search engines will not trust these directories very much, and human visitors even less.

    Spam free resources – As suggested above, only submit to directories that accept “good” websites. If a directory lists MFA (Made for Adsense) websites or websites full of ads – skip these directories.

    Well indexed in search engines – If search engines like a directory, they will index (list) many of the directories internal pages. It’s recommended to submit your website to directories that have good search engine exposure because this generally means that the directories are considered good quality or high quality.

    Regularly maintained without broken pages / dead links – A directory that is full of dead links or expired domains may lose their trust with search engines.  To test out whether a particular directory suffers from these ailments – visit a few sub-categories of a directory and randomly click on some of the links contained within those categories to be sure that there’s not a large number of dead links. Many directories approve a website and then NEVER check it again, regardless of whether the listed website maintains the submission criteria. Bottom line – try to get listed in directories that maintain their databases regularly.

    Have backlinks in search engines, or some established link popularity – As far as SEO is concerned, you can get high quality backlinks by submitting your website to directories. So, you should submit your website to directories that have backlinks themselves, which will often-times help increase the popularity of your website as well.

    Originality of the directory – Some webmasters purchase a domain, host it, install a directory script and use a common category dump to create hundreds of categories. You’ll find that many directories have almost the exact same category structure. And sometimes, there’ll be directories with the same websites in each category, which means that there will be nearly identical directories on different domains. These “cut and paste” directories provide little to no SEO value and not recommended for submissions. It’s always better to submit to directories that have their own content, or at least differentiate their links/categories so that they are substantially unique.

    Category structure – What’s the category structure of directory? I sometime see a directory with thousands of categories but no websites listed in them. Search engines don’t like these kinds of directories.

    Tips

    Here are some common traits of directories that you should avoid:

    • Directories that have a common category dump.
    • Directories that no quality review process or directories that literally accept every website submitted.
    • Directories that are mainly for link building aspects or making money with website submissions.
    • Directories that are “Directory farms”.  Basically, one editor creates hundreds of directories just to sell links. This is a bad business practice and you should stay away from it.
    • Directories that sell Page Rank (it’s forbidden by Google)

    Source : Adam Carn

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