15 Mar, 2010

Online business directory submission for SEO

Posted by: drobs In: Google search engine|MSN Bing Search Engine|Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

What is an online business directory?

Essentially an online business directory is a website where business or website owners can add their website URL, contact details and information about their company. This information is generally listed into nested categories to allow visitors to the business directory to find the products or services they are looking for quickly and easily.

Why use online business directories?

Traditional advertising is very expensive. Many companies are cutting their advertising budgets and many newer companies have tiny or no advertising budget.  Online business directories and in particular local business directories allow you to reach a targeted local online audience looking for your specific goods or services. Many local online directories offer free submission (perhaps in return for a backlink) and other charge a fee, which is often relatively small. In some instances it is possible to be listed in more than one category.

How do I decide which online business directory to submit my website to?

The answer to this question is very varied but as with any business decision, you should conduct some research. Shop around and compare any costs, but make sure you are comparing like for like. You might not have much choice if you are targeting an area with few local online directories or you have a very niche product or service. There are also national or international online directory options available. You’re looking for an online directory that will give you a good level of exposure, traffic and ultimately converted business.  You should aim for the online business directories that provide the largest customer base and the highest number of categories you can submit your site URL to at the most competitive price.

Keyword or key phrase focus

As part of your SEO strategy you will hopefully have given consideration to the keywords or key phrases that potential customers will use to search and find you on Google and other search engines. You should apply these to your online business directory investigation and selection. Those online business directories that appear on the first page of the search results for your target keywords should be your first choice, subject of course to their cost.

Which directory to choose?

Don’t just stick with one directory, but hedge your bests. If you are going down the paid route, pick two or three different online business directories and select the ones that work best for your particular product or service. Make sure you don’t get tied into a long term contract and make sure you monitor that the directory is yielding the results you are paying for on a consistent basis. If it is not, ditch it and go elsewhere.

Also submit to free directories because there is no cost involved. However, make sure that they aren’t deem bad neighbourhood sites or link farms. You can check a website or online directory here: http://www.bad-neighborhood.com/text-link-tool.htm. If it is a free directory, don’t get too hung up on the Google Page Rank (PR). It could be a new site and whilst it has a lower PR now, it could soon have a higher one.

A good example of a free local online directory for Caversham Reading UK.

Gatorweb blog is brought to you by Gator Web Design – local web design in Reading UK and is part of Gator Industries Limited UK

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