There is an endless number of web directories out there. And many new web directories pop up every single day. Should you submit your website to these directories? How many should you go for? Which ones should you start with? There are so many directories out there that it can be a daunting task to start submitting your website. To many web users, they aren’t even aware of these directories. That’s because the main purpose of most directories isn’t to help web users find websites. They are made for site owners to submit their sites and receive a link for SEO purposes. Now it’s time to answer some of the questions posed earlier.

Should you submit your site to directories? Generally, yes. There are some key directories you will want to be found in and some that you should probably stay away from.
How many directories should I submit to? Most directory links don’t carry a lot of weight. There isn’t a “good” or “bad” number of directories to submit to but if you submit your site to 1000 weaker directories, it may not equal the link weight of 1 good directory. The key is managing your time to make the most out of your directory submissions.
Which directories should I submit my website to? This is the important one. You can waste hours and hours submitting to the millions of web directories out there but you’ll be much better off by starting with some of the most popular directories that are actually respected by Google and other major search engines. Here are some of the directories you want to be in:

  • DMOZ – Also known as the Open Directory Project (ODP), DMOZ is completely edited by volunteers and each submission is verified by human eyes before its allowed in. Because of the strict rules, search engines place a lot of trust in links from this directory. The best part: it’s free. The worst part: it can take months, possibly up to a year before your submission is viewed and allowed. Make sure you take the time to verify that all your information is correct before submitting, you don’t want your submission declined.
  • Yahoo! Directory – Yahoo! was one of the first to introduce a large scale directory. Yahoo! is obviously a trusted source and human users actually reference this directory to find businesses and websites. The good news: submission show up much quicker. The bad news: this one isn’t free. If you have the budget to include this submission, it will be worth it.
  • Business.com – If your site falls under the categories in Business.com, this would be another great place to list your website. This is another paid directory like Yahoo.
  • JoeAnt.com – Another paid directory although much cheaper than Yahoo! or Business.com

Other than a few select directories, you probably should avoid any directories that require a payment to be listed. There are so many other options out there, your marketing budget could be better spent elsewhere. You may also notice many “services” offering to submit your website to thousands of search engines. Steer clear of these schemes. Typically, there is never a need to submit to search engines. After building a few links, Google and other search engines will find your site and you’ll be better off being found this way vs. submitting your site manually. After submitting your website to some of the directories listed above, try searching for niche directories that only list websites related to your own business, products, niche, etc. If your time is limited, the SEO benefit from submitting to thousands of sites is not worth it. Stick to the major directories and some smaller, niche directories and you will be one step closer to search engine success!

Bryan Phelps
CEO at Big Leap
Bryan is Big Leap's CEO and founder. When he's not working on the business you can find him spending time with his family, enjoying the sun in St. George, UT, or hitting the links. Maybe all three.