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What are Web Directories for?

By: Jason Kamara

Ten years ago, we didn’t have Google, and search engines such as Altavista and Excite were the best way to find information online. After the search engine wars came to a head with Google emerging as a clear winner, the role of the web directory became more defined and more necessary for Internet marketing. So, what, exactly, is a web directory for?

A web directory is a categorized listing of website URLs along with a brief description of each site. General web directories have resources on a diverse range of subject matter. Niche directories are more defined and provide information on areas such as business and finance, health, pets and shopping. The owner or promoter of the URL often pays a small submission fee to the directory to place his/her URL. In return, the payee hopes to gain some direct traffic from this directory and to improve the visibility of the website.

There is also another important benefit to directory submission. The Google robot spiders popular directories often (more than once a day), and will quickly index any new links that are added. That means that this backlink to your site will soon be noticed by Google, and the some of that page’s value will be conferred upon your website. This is a numberic value on a scale of 0 to 10 (known as PageRank) that is located on your Google Toolbar. The more backlinks you get from high PageRank sites, the greater will be the PageRank of your own pages.

One of the quickest ways to increase your Google PageRank is to submit your site to a premium paid directory. The PageRank scale is logarithmic, meaning that it gets increasingly difficult to achieve a higher PageRank once you move up the scale. It is not difficult to increase your PageRank from PR1 to PR3 (a couple of links from PR5 pages should do it). But it is time consuming and expensive to improve your PageRank from PR7 to PR8. It could take thousands of quality backlinks.

That is why a quality web directory can charge a listing fee of $100 or more a year. Because one backlink from a directory with an inner page PR7 can really boost your own PageRank. You will also receive some human traffic as a result of listing in a popular directory.

From their humble beginnings as a convenient listing of categorized resources, web directories have evolved into a necessary component of any internet marketing strategy. They provide information-seekers with a clean and convenient way of finding the information they need, as well as serving a vital role in the promotion and search engine optimization of any web resource.

are under five dollars.