Workings of a Directory
by Paul Wilson
World Wide Web searches are of two kinds: web directories and search engines. Web directories are extensive catalogues of web addresses that are indexed by subject and relevance. Experts review the sites, categorize them, and organize the information.
Searches can be made by category or keywords. And, vast numbers of websites can be sorted through to locate what is required. Sites are included either by submission by the owner or by the directory's editors when they come across sites.
Web directories are mainly of two kinds:
- General directories that are automated indexes of pages not vetted by any reviewer or editor. They are a compilation of web sites and internet documents classified under different categories or subject indexes. Each listing carries a brief summary of the content contained within. Examples of popular general directories are: Google, and Excite.
- Selected directories contain web sites and pages that have been vetted. These are of a certain quality and standard. These directories also provide links to other sites and documents pertaining to a particular subject or theme. They lead you to links that provide authoritative material written by experts in each field. Examples are: Librarians Index to the Internet, About.com, Virtual Library, and more.
Internet browsers can type queries into the directory and the directory will look for matches. Alternately, a searcher can view the indexed categories of the directory. Major categories would include: education, computers, business, sports, family, entertainment, arts, and so on. Within each category are subcategories that pertain to different aspects of the main category.
Links in directories are free, paid, or free but need a reciprocal link. Links are provided on pages with similar or relevant content. Most beneficial are high traffic directories that have numerous web sites listed under each category and sub category.
Characteristics of a quality directory are: numerous quality web sites are present in each category; there are editors who vet sites submitted; large number of pages in MSN, Google, as well as Yahoo; has a low Alexa rating; has a page ranker on pages; and pages are present in DMOZ and Yahoo directories.
The Alexa rating is calculated by the number of visitors to the site. While PageRank is a rating system of 1-10 for web pages devised by Google.
Submitting a web site to a directory will: increase click through traffic; have the site indexed by search engines; get higher rankings for targeted keywords; and get the site indexed by spiders.
Advantages of directories are:
- Substantial staying power.
- Marketing avenues.
- Exponential growth and popularity.
To be accepted by a directory one must ensure that your site:
- Content is comprehensive, unique, and plenty. Be sure to add new content regularly.
- Is stable at all times and quick to load. There should be no broken links.
- Works with multiple browsers as also with the most recent versions. Test your site accessibility with different browsers.
- Is placed in the most appropriate or applicable category. Be sure it is distinct from other competitors. It should add value to the directory.
- Submission details comply with directory guidelines.
Choose a search engine friendly directory rather than one with outlinks.
Directories must be selected with care. Due consideration must be given to one-time as well as recurring costs. The pros and cons of being a part of a directory should be studied before any steps are taken. Understand completely the world of web directories and their uses.
About the Author
Paul Wilson is a freelance writer for http://www.1866webdirectory.com, the premier website directory that provides human edited categorized website listings including business websites, news websites, gaming websites, shopping websites, travel websites and more.