|Google - DMOZ|
Google - Open Directory or Yahoo or?
I trust this posting does not break any TOS - if so please delete and accept my apologies.
Something to ponder.
I have read in the Webmaster Info at Google that they recommend sites be listed in DMOZ and Yahoo to help listings.
As their company overview clearly states - "Google's mission is to deliver the best search experience on the Internet by making the world's information universally accessible and useful. Google, developer of the world's largest search engine, offers the fastest, easiest way to find information on the web." -
would they not be better advised to consolidate with Yahoo only or build their own directory?
I have read many postings in WW that say Google wish to provide up-to-date and correct results for users search requests and also postings for and against building their own directory.
We at WW also know Yahoo is not free (except for non commercial sites) although IMHO ANY professional web designer/SEO would advise a client to pay for a listing in Yahoo.
Again we understand (unless I am mistaken) that Yahoo recently purchased Inktomi, so this could/would be a problem for Google in the future.
Can they continue to recommend DMOZ or is there an alternative?
One example I can quote from experience is a site with a unique product, submitted to DMOZ Jan 2003. There are currently in excess of 200 other sites waiting to be reviewed in this particular category and although the helpful Resource Zone people have been kind and checked, the message comes back - "check back again in 2-3 months!".
My philosophy in 40 years in business has always been "You get what you pay for" and whilst I admire the basis of DMOZ and the free of charge service they provide, with hard working volunteer editors, can Google continue to use their directory as a basis, if they claim to provide up-to-date and fresh results for a given search phrase?
The question was not difficult, but I am sure the solution is.
I think DMOZ is extremely important in the fight against spam and thats why Google use them.
They made the decision at the end of the day - Humans are the best at identifying SPAM, and although it can be frustrating waiting for a DMOZ editor to list your site, I personally would rather wait slightly longer for good results, rather than wade through a ton of spammy SERPS.
not that DMOZ has 100% solved the spam issue by any means
Excellent thought subway.
I never thought of that - BUT if it takes 3-12 months for DMOZ to check it and list/reject it, it could already have been in Google for most of that time anyway.
>>Can they continue to recommend DMOZ or is there an alternative?
The obvious alternative to me (and the one I personally would like to see) is for Google to simply begin accepting paid submissions to their current directory. The ODP base provides them with a solid foundation, but as you pointed out, it isn't the most efficient system when it comes to listing new sites.
If Google used some of the new office space they recently acquired to house some paid directory editors, they could dramatically improve the entire situation. Those that can't afford it could still get in the old fashioned way. And those who would prefer a turnaround time measured in days rather than months could break out the credit card and pay for an express review.
Quite agree WebGuerrilla
Shall we offer to set it up? - we could anagram the name Google Directory
We could each be a Googley Director!
>My philosophy in 40 years in business has always been "You get what you pay for" and whilst I admire the basis of DMOZ and the free of charge service they provide, with hard working volunteer editors, can Google continue to use their directory as a basis, if they claim to provide up-to-date and fresh results for a given search phrase?
Googleguy has said that an ODP link is treated just like any other link on the Net. As such directory links aren't going to effect how well any site does on any given ordinary search in most cases. As for the Google directory itself, Yahoo is proprietary, and the ODP is a freebie to Google to use as a directory. Also, you need to look at the big picture. Most searches are not looking to buy anything, but are people seeking information. The ODP actually does a better job than Yahoo for that, because a freebie listing in the Yahoo directory is often is more difficult to get, and takes longer, than the ODP. Yahoo may be a better directory from the point of view of rich businesses that can buy their way in for $299 a year, but not necessarily so for the average surfer.
The problem with DMOZ is a shortage of editors. A voluntary editor may only be able to attend to a category once or twice a week and during that session possibly reject/accept 2 or 3 sites (they normally check each site out quite thoroughly from my experience). If there is only one editor for that category and it receives more submissions each week
than the editor processes then the backlog will always increase.
Surely a solution is for Google to fund some paid editors to work in DMOZ in a backlog-busting role to reduce the large submission backlogs in some popular categories and thus take some of the pressure off the volunteers? I recently noticed that a DMOZ category I sometimes browse has gone from 2 editors to nil - maybe they quit because of the pressure of an ever increasing submission queue?
Good point rfgdxm1 BUT whilst I don`t disagree with your perception of the matter with regard to non commercial sites - if a site is designed for a business, whether it's widget hire or widget sales with a turnover of £50,000 pa or £5 million pa it does not matter - a Yahoo listing will always be the priority and produce better and faster results. If Google had a similar directory - companies would, IMO, be queuing at the door to get themselves listed.
Good idea walthamstow
Good thought - let's hope someone puts it in the melting pot at their next board meeting
Several issues here.
Google loves collections of quality links (like Yahoo and the ODP). So long as they can get eithor or both for free, they will (and they'll probably give them high page rank). That's not predicated on any other side deals with AOL and/or Yahoo. They were consuming the ODP data long before Netscape started using their search engine. I bet they were either consuming Yahoo directory pages, or negotiating with Yahoo to get permission to do so, long before Yahoo switched to using their results. And if Yahoo or AOL switch to some other search engine, Google's need for high-protein link lists won't change -- they'll still consume the ODP RDF (which is guaranteed free forever) and they'll still be politely (and privately) badgering other major directories that forbid spiders for special permission to spider.
Google's advice to webmasters is: "Links are the chief thing, therefore get links." Yahoo and the ODP are merely examples of relatively high-PR pages where it's [sorta] easy to get links. Google's advice shouldn't really be taken as a specific recommendation for those pages. And that wouldn't change, even if AOL and Yahoo both reverted to Inktomi.
>The obvious alternative to me (and the one I personally would like to see) is for Google to simply begin accepting paid submissions to their current directory.
I'm not sure why no legitimate portal hasn't done this (and yes, I know about topspam.scam, um, topsites.us.) It seems obvious to this non-entrepreneurial person also, and it seems envisioned by the ODP founders. Both AOL and Google seem (to me) to be in a position to do this.
>The ODP base provides them with a solid foundation, but as you pointed out, it isn't the most efficient system when it comes to listing new sites.
No, it IS the most EFFICIENT -- no other model in existance reviews even a quarter as many submittals, or lists anything like as many sites. But it pays for that efficiency by being completely UNPREDICTABLE (for any particular site), and I suspect many companies would be willing to pay to get a review in a predictable time -- Yahoo is still getting some revenue for this service.
Yahoo's directory is poor because you can either pay to get into it, or if you apply free you virtually never get in. ODP is 100 times more efficient than Yahoo in terms of its listings. That's one thing you hardly ever hear those who complain about ODP say, but it's quite blatantly true. Free listings get in Yahoo, but only a miniscule amout, and the free categories in Yahoo are hopelessly out of date.
Pay for inclusion directories are worthless for a search engine. they demonstrate no quality, just some money. Yahoo's $299 standards are not 100% worthless, but 99%. Almost all sites get in, so the commercial categories there have zilch quality control.
There are only two solutions in the near future: more volunteers for ODP, or more paid staff for ODP (ideally as Google employees). PFI certainly doesn't enter into that in any way, shape or form. Directories that want quality need to be free and never take PFI. It's not the money that matters, it's the quality.
>Google's advice to webmasters is: "Links are the chief thing, therefore get links." Yahoo and the ODP are merely examples of relatively high-PR pages where it's [sorta] easy to get links. Google's advice shouldn't really be taken as a specific recommendation for those pages. And that wouldn't change, even if AOL and Yahoo both reverted to Inktomi.
I think Google says this for 2 reasons. The first is that these are directories where is fairly easy to get links. With Yahoo if you've got the money you can buy your way in even. The other is that Google has a current business relationship with both Yahoo and AOL. Both are scratching Google's back, so Google is returning the favor. Another reason is that these directories are specific places they can point anyone to. As a practical matter, I'd advise people to get links from related sites to yours, and friends and family on their sites, first. However, not everyone knows people they can get links from.
>Yahoo's directory is poor because you can either pay to get into it, or if you apply free you virtually never get in. ODP is 100 times more efficient than Yahoo in terms of its listings. That's one thing you hardly ever hear those who complain about ODP say, but it's quite blatantly true. Free listings get in Yahoo, but only a miniscule amout, and the free categories in Yahoo are hopelessly out of date.
Yeah, on the free side Yahoo is less than great. The ODP does this much better. As for commercial cats, Yahoo is the best directory that money can buy. Which as a user isn't my idea of the best.
Say what you will about DMOZ - but non-spam sites, submitted to the right cats eventually get in. I have one e-commerce site that has been waiting for 10 months, but I others had no problems as long as they followed DMOZ guidelines.
OTOH, free listings into Yahoo...forget about it.
An ODP listing is -far- more valuable than an "ordinary" link. Unless of course that "ordinary" link is from a site with a PR 7.
A link in Dmoz or Yahoo doesn't matter if we're talking about a well established site that already has thousands of incoming links. But for a new site or a site that needs a PR boast, an ODP link can be valuable. Also that added little description under your site in the search listing is also good to have.
The obvious thing for Google to do is to start their own directory. Don't buy Dmoz. Just start their own standard directory and use the sites currently listed in Dmoz as a starting point. There are plenty of volunteer's who would be up for the job. And offering a pay option for those who want an immediate review would also be good and would allow them to have some paid employees on the editor staff.
Sorry, but Dmoz is not a good directory for getting sites listed and it will always be under-staffed for as long as the current people(meta-editors) are in charge.(They intentionally reject qualified applications without offering a reason and prefer for the volunteer staff to be small.)
I'm not even going to get into the massive server problems this directory has.....
Nowadays Yahoo pretty much only allows sites that pay. So the 'net could use a good quality directory thats consistant.
The only reason people care so much about Dmoz is because of Google. So it makes sense for Google to either start their own, or stop recommending Dmoz or using their descriptions in their index.
>A link in Dmoz or Yahoo doesn't matter if we're talking about a well established site that already has thousands of incoming links. But for a new site or a site that needs a PR boast, an ODP link can be valuable. Also that added little description under your site in the search listing is also good to have.
Most ODP cats have low PR, and lots of links on the page that dilute it. Seriously, in terms of Google rankings there are lots of teenagers out there with home pages that have enough PR a link there will do a lot better than one in the ODP. Particularly since if you know one of these teenagers, you #1) can get a link quick, and #2) get exactly the keyword rich anchor text that will give you the maximum benefit with Google.
|My philosophy in 40 years in business has always been "You get what you pay for" and whilst I admire the basis of DMOZ and the free of charge service they provide, with hard working volunteer editors, can Google continue to use their directory as a basis, if they claim to provide up-to-date and fresh results for a given search phrase? |
The question was not difficult, but I am sure the solution is.
Ultimately, you have two problems here:
One: You've "been in business for 40 years", and have apparently not noticed some things work differently on the Internet. Open Source works here. Throwing cliches at us is not illuminating, it's just annoying.
Two: You're seeing a solution to the wrong problem. Yahoo is an inherently biased information source because it's paid for -- its listings are only up-to-date for people who have money to burn. The ODP may be a slow add in some categories, but it's the same slow for everybody. That makes it a fair game for all entrants.
If you hang around here long enough to get an idea what Google's people stand for, you'll realize that slow but fair is more compatible with their philosophies and goals than fast but expensive. Neither directory will ever be as quick or big as Google proper, but even as a supplemental resource, the ODP is a better fit.
You asked the wrong question. Your answer is therefore no good.
|Most ODP cats have low PR, and lots of links on the page that dilute it. Seriously, in terms of Google rankings there are lots of teenagers out there with home pages that have enough PR a link there will do a lot better than one in the ODP. |
A link in a PR 6 catagory with less than 70 listings will give a new site about a PR 4-5 and most likely, a regular freshbot visit.
That's pretty good for just one link.
But I agree with your point. Dmoz isn't as important as people think.
>A link in a PR 6 catagory with less than 70 listings will give a new site about a PR 4-5 and most likely, a regular freshbot visit.
Might be good enough for a PR4. However, PR6+ ODP cats are pretty rare. Of course, nice of your site is lucky enough to end up in one.
If you check the research papers, a lot suggest to use the DMOZ/ODP and Yahoo as starting point for crawling, or more importantly, as a seeding/testing/checking field for theming, query expansion suggestion and similarity testing.
There is a lot of gold in well set-up human edited directories (paid or unpaid).
I would not be suprised if Google has collected a few other "quality" stricktly edited directories for their list of useful back-up information. (healthy human hubs)
|Might be good enough for a PR4. However, PR6+ ODP cats are pretty rare. Of course, nice of your site is lucky enough to end up in one. |
I'll have to double check the different cats for PR.
I have a site located in a PR 6 catagory with less than 70 other sites. 80% of the sites in that catagory are Pr 5. A handful are PR 6 or 7. And a couple of the new sites dont have any PR at all.
That same site just got a deeplink in another catagory that has less than 12 other links. Should be interesting to see how much the PR raises.
As much as I hate Dmoz, I do have good luck with getting sites and deep links listed :-)
I think we must try to concentrate on the Google theme here and not turn this thread into a "Is DMOZ or Yahoo better".
(That should be posted in the correct forum)
Hutcheson, vitaplease and John_Creed I agree with you both and some of the info from rfgdxm1 is, as always, very enlightening. :-)
There is no doubt that both Yahoo and DMOZ have a place in the industry and certainly for free listings, DMOZ is the leader for those web sites that wish to gain an early and slightly higher PR in Google. (DMOZ does of course assist commercial listings as well).
IMHO in the world of business, the way Google currently provide directory results will only be helped by a directory that supplies a speedy listing with quality "in context" results. We all know that DMOZ does supply quality results.
Businesses who use only volunteers (ALL volunteers should be highly commended for their work) IMO cannot provide an up-to-date service - hence the situation at DMOZ, creating in turn a lack of up-to-date information in the Google Directory.
It therefore follows that this can probably probably only be achieved by a directory with:
1. trained and paid editors who are selective in their listings
2. is not governed by high profit
3. provide staff at managerial level to oversee the whole operation.
4. is a mixture of Volunteer and paid editors and staff
5. or anything else anyone would like to add.
An easy task .......... I think not!:-)
For those people who feel everything should be free on the Internet I say this:
IMO NO BUSINESS can continue to grow and achieve ROI based on just free services. Web designers charge for their services, SEO's charge for their services, solictors, accountants etc etc etc.....
Money makes the world go around - it has done so for thousands of years and will continue to do so for the future. Whilst the Internet is without question the best resource for information ever invented, much of which is freely available, it is without doubt the best selling tool ever invented for companies who wish to advertise their services and products to the world.
Utilising and harnessing the excellent technology and SERP's from SE's such as Google and the information supplied by directories including PFI, Directory charges and Adwords etc correctly is, and should be, the goal of all businesses.
So yes, in most cases those companies with money should and probably will eventually win out in the race for traffic for top products and services (if their directors know what they are doing) because they can afford to employ/contract the best people to obtain the best listings possible but, there will always be room for the "smaller - medium sized" companies to have a "Slice of the Cake" by selecting wisely.
(I am willing to bet that statement might bring a few speedy and interesting replies)
If utilising the combined services of free listings and PFI in search engines such as Google or directories such as DMOZ or any other SE for that matter, using relevant information from a directory is a must for a business and for the search engine using that data.
Whether a company is selling one plastic green widget or a million gold widgets, it all comes down to "Relevant and up-to-date SERP's.
So the original question posted was easy and the answer now I believe becomes even more difficult.
I do not pretend to know the answer to this, but I`m sure if WW generate enough quality feedback here, then everyone can move forward - including the market leaders in their respective fields - Google and DMOZ.
It "only" (I use the word very lightly) takes good practices, common sense and forward planning and thinking(and I would imagine a highly dedicated technical team, huge resources and manpower etc etc etc!).
That's my pennyworth for today - it is great to be able to share my thoughts with WW members.
Remember that dmoz has *extremely* limited resources, since it is a non-profit making part of the AOL/Netscape organisation. Hence one techie person, a handful of staff and great difficulty in upgrading the hardware. Only by generating some source of revenue will dmoz be in a position to even consider the risks and benefits of taking on more paid staff.
If the dmoz database was pay-to-use then how many sites would pay? Google maybe but I'd be surprised if many others could afford/would bother to buy it. Even relatively high profile directory sites like Alexa might find it difficult to justify.
"IMO NO BUSINESS can continue to grow and achieve ROI based on just free services"
Tell that to my fiancee before she goes shopping tomorrow.
"Only by generating some source of revenue will dmoz be in a position to even consider the risks and benefits of taking on more paid staff."
DMOZ generates *enormous* revenue for Google. Dmoz is the literal foundation of their quality search results.
Make no mistake about it, a free to submit to directory resource like DMOZ that no one is even charged to use can still be a mega-millions cash-cow. (To some degree, all the profitable search engines who use it are making money from it.)
|Just start their own standard directory and use the sites currently listed in Dmoz as a starting point. |
DMOZ would have to agree*, and I can't see DMOZ agreeing to something that leaves them behind.
*copyright reasons - you can't just take someone's link collection and do what you like with it.
Is there a reason do you think why AOL/Netscape do not want upgrade to faster paid inclusion + retain the slower free submission - it would benefit at least some their own results and Googles.
After all that is what happened to Yahoo in the "old days" -went from months of waiting to 7 days - amazing what happens when people pay.
Paid inclusion would also possibly provide funds to assist DMOZ increase their resources.
>DMOZ would have to agree*, and I can't see DMOZ agreeing to something that leaves them behind.
>*copyright reasons - you can't just take someone's link collection and do what you like with it.
Incorrect. Google can do this so long as they follow the attribution requirements set out above.
"DMOZ generates *enormous* revenue for Google. Dmoz is the literal foundation of their quality search results."
...but of course Google doesn't own the ODP.
Money coming into the ODP
--> some editors would want to be paid for their efforts
----> motivation for editing is now financially-driven rather than quality driven - I'll list these 100 sites because then I'll get paid 100 cents, not because they necessarily all add to the directory
--> other (many) editors have in the past specifically stated that they would leave the directory if it became PFI or other revenue-generating model
Take a paid-for-inclusion directory like Yahoo or Looksmart. Are the listings in those categories the best sites or the sites that pay? Initially of course, they're the sites that pay. But the Y or LS editor might want to even up the category to provide a more balanced list, aiming to complete a list of the best sites. What source would they go to to complete that list...erm...dmoz? Or Google, which usually comes up with dmoz-weighted results to some extent.
Q: Which sites pay for inclusion?
A: Sites with money to spend or money to earn - therefore:
1) Genuine quality commercial sites
2) Affiliate or other hangers-on sites
1) get listed anyway, albeit with some delay in some areas of the directory, highly affected by their ability to write a guidelines-conforming title and description.
2) don't get listed because they don't add unique content to the directory. Not many people at dmoz would advocate changing the rules on acceptance so that the owners can make more money IMHO.
Do you pay even if you don't get included? If so then sites might complain that they didn't get a "long enough" review for their $299 through tracking a dmoz visit in their logs. If you only pay if you do get included then there are hundreds of thousands of affiliate sites out there who would take the chance since a dmoz listing is highly significant for a newly-starting-out affiliate site. The unreviewed queues could easily be just as long and just as spammy, especially in the herbal genital enlargement categories, the hotel booking categories and the ringtones categories.
My 2 pence...