What Should You Know About Directory Listing?
Online website directories provide several benefits, the most important of which is links. While this article is about attorneys, it applies to any industry.
A FindLaw whitepaper, “Visibility, Design, and Content: Three Steps to Successful Online Marketing,” stated: “In the expanding online market for legal services, the most successful law firms focus on three essential (and related) areas. ): creating visibility through search engines and directories; using a distinctive site design to differentiate the business; and delivering persuasive content that engages prospects and deepens customer relationships … other law firms, online directories and legal sites like FindLaw also support an effective link building campaign. “
When considering paying for a list review in an online directory, most people think only of the potential for traffic and wonder if the cost of the list review is really worth it. However, this is not the only consideration.
Obviously, when an online directory appears in the first search results of a search engine, people can find the listing on your website. One result is that your list will provide something branded as people see it. Another result is that some of these people will click on your listing, land on your website, and possibly do business with you.
The most important and often overlooked benefit, as FindLaw pointed out, is that when links point to your website from many specialized directories, such as a legal directory pointing to a link to a law firm’s website, Your “web popularity” improves and the position of your law firm’s website in search engine results will move upward.
If you are serious about having your law firm’s website appear in the top search results, it is imperative to list it in as many legal directories as possible. Again, this applies to any business. Just search for niche directories for your industry.
Regardless of what business you are in, it is also beneficial to get listed in some of the top ranked general directories. Of course, once a directory is well ranked, there is usually a fee to review its listing.
The website directory must provide you with a true “live” link without a “do not track” tag. The “no follow” tag prevents any page rank, sometimes called “link juice” from being transferred to your website. There are several ways to use a “do not follow” tag and it is not easy for the average attorney to know if it is being used. Look for specialized directories that do not use a “do not track” tag, such as LawFirms911.com for law firms. If the website directory you are considering does not state whether to use a “do not track” tag, simply email them and ask. If the directory provides a follow-up link and is a well-maintained niche directory, go ahead and pay to have your listing reviewed.
Why should you pay to have your ad reviewed? A well-maintained website directory will manually review each website listing to make sure the listing belongs to the directory and is placed in the most appropriate category.
Search engines will ignore a website directory full of unwanted website listings, just like your listing. Directories are attacked daily with spam submissions and websites that have nothing to do with the niche directory topic. To make sure that a list of websites submitted is in fact a law firm and not a website that sells drugs or a website about automobiles, I have to look at the website that is submitted. Many times, it doesn’t take long. However, spam websites are often cleverly disguised and only after research I find it to be a useless website.
If Internet searchers are going to use a directory and if search engines are going to value their link in a directory, the listings must be properly categorized. Many listings are submitted to inappropriate categories, usually because the submitter didn’t take the time to find the most appropriate category, or because the submitter wanted the listing in a higher, more general category.
To make sure that a list of websites submitted is in fact a law firm and is submitted to the most suitable category, I have to look at the website that is submitted.
I don’t want to just delete your listing. Instead, your ad will be placed in the appropriate category. It takes time to re-categorize submitted listings. For anyone, time is expensive. Since I am a lawyer, maintaining my boards is even more expensive.
If your ad is moving to a more specific category, don’t worry. Being more closely categorized with similar websites is beneficial. Also, being at the top or in one of the few links in the category can be better than being at the bottom of a category with hundreds of ads.
As can be seen, it takes a long time to go through all the submitted website lists. It also takes time and money to maintain the directory infrastructure, including its software, search engine optimization, and other aspects.
You need to charge a small fee to review your website if a website directory owner is going to maintain the directory properly. It is a small price to pay to ensure that the directory benefits your website and does not harm it.
Websites that have been previously submitted should be periodically reviewed to ensure that the owner has not lost the submitted website as they did not renew the domain name and it was subsequently picked up by a “spammer”, resulting in lists of unintentional spam in the directory. This happens too often. The standard review period is annual. Some directories charge an annual renewal fee for this service.
I have been adding more directories and am currently at the point where I will have to hire someone. If my directories are to remain permanent, they must be run like any profitable overhead business.