Like Me? Follow Me.
When we launch a new site for a client, one of the first things the I-COM team recommends is to submit the site to the major online directories. Directory submissions are seen in some SEO circles as laughably old-hat, so why do we do this?
Well there are 3 reasons for submitting to web directories:
1. Inbound link from an aged, authoritative domain
This is comparative to a real world scenario. If we were launching a brand new offline company we would still want to be in the Yellow Pages, despite it being a bit of a marketing relic.
2. Focused subcategories place you beside your competitors
For a new company, a directory inclusion immediately beside your main competitors is obviously desirable.
Directories such as Yahoo! have many layers of categorisation so you can really hone down a category which exactly sums up your business.
3. Directories are often mirrored, leading to further inbound links
This point is a lot less valuable than the two above, however in an online market where every little helps, the fact that a valid entry in DMOZ will be replicated in many other places online can only benefit a site. For instance, Alexa reproduces dmoz data, Google Directory (yes, it still exists) scrapes dmoz. Why no one would want to benefit from that is beyond me!
Which Directories Are Best?
If you've heard of it you should probably try to use it, so as mentioned, Yahoo Directory and dmoz. We also recommend Joe Ant and Best of the Web. Another starter web directories list is mentioned in that other web stalwart, Wikipedia - List of Web Directories.
And the moral of the story? Just because it's old-fashioned, doesn't mean that it isn't worth doing.