Directory Links Don't Deliver
As Much Link Value And Direct Traffic As They Used To.
Why Links? - says: "In general, [everybody] can improve the Rank of their Sites by increasing the Number of high-quality Sites that link to their Pages.” [Google Webmaster Center]
Directories Becoming Less Relevant ...
Directories are becoming less relevant for building Google PageRank and direct traffic.
- Active channels, such as blogs or other social media sites, tend to drive far more traffic than most fairly static directory sites.
- As a business model directories do not work well unless you are hyper focused or have significant authority to leverage.
- As more people write and compile information the quality of information needs to be better to be link worthy.
- Most directories do not add much context as to why a particular site is important, useful or worthwhile.
- People do not give out links as freely as they once did. It is hard for a directory site to be viewed as link worthy as they were in the past, thus they do not get as much authority to pass on.
- Google's algorithms are improving. They are getting better at scrubbing link quality and filtering out duplicate or near duplicate content.
- A lot of general directories are simply useless.
- Couple improving search algorithms with social bookmarking sites and they make the job of professional catalogs and archivists less relevant, except perhaps for ultra niche categories that are not well cited.
Why is the Directory Business Model Falling Apart?
- Directories create inefficiently priced marketplaces.
- Most directories drive so little traffic and value that it is hard for them to make their marketplaces more efficient.
Things to consider when registering with directories
- A Yahoo! listing listing may be worth 20 or more links from lower quality directories.
- Each good link you get allows you to get many junky links without it really hurting you.
- Mix link anchor texts and descriptions.
- If your market is competitive and your site is new you will also need to get other types of links if you want to rank in Google
- If your brand is not generic it may only take a couple links for you to rank at or near the top of the search results for it.
We still like a number of directories (see our opt-in box for the Directory Top Twenty List in the top right corner of this page) but we do not offer 'building directory links' as a service anymore. Things have moved on and we focus on Social Media now since they provide far more quality, better search engine rankings and can deliver an absolut astonishing amount of direct targeted site traffic.
However, we encourage site owners / website masters to build a small number of links from top quality directories (again: see our Top Twenty List in the top right corner of this page).
Mid to low quality directories do not offer lots of value in Google but they still help with the other engines.