|ODP Submission advice|
tips humbly requested
Just formulated a vague strategy for my new site. Basically, submit to directories first and engines later.
Done looksmart and 1 week later still waiting for the bonus listing on MSN. (not sure how long this will take).
Thought I would do ODP next. I would be very grateful for any knowledge on how to achieve a decent ranking here - before I make my submission. Many thanks in advance.
For example - tips on title and site description would be a very handy start.
Thanks in advance.
I suggest you these tip:
- Choose the right category. Try searching your target keywords to find the appropriate category.
- Have a look at the descriptions and titles of your competitors.
- Have a look at other Directories too. If you are going to submit to Looksmart, have a look at title and description in DMOZ or Yahoo, just to pick good idea about description.
- Title and description should have the typical average lenght of listed sites in your choosen category.
- Do not use repetitive keywords in title and description.
With reference to title:
if all the listed site have not keywords in the title, do not try to use keywords in title: you can risk that the editor will edit your submission...
If a site has keywords in the title, have a look at that site to investigate why. Take note of that site: maybe you can use that example to complain aboout a bad edited title. Usually you can not have the same keywords of the category in the title (if the category is "shoes", it is very rare that you can have the word "shoes" in your title.
You can have Keywords in title when the name of your company contains the keywords.
With reference to the description:
this is very important; you should adopt a description that is appealing and that seems unique to the listing; it could be better that the targeted keywords are in the top of the description.
Be sure about grammar and mistakes! Have a look at some meta descriptions of your competitors too.
You should avoid to force the editor to edit your submission.
Probably Looksmart editors will edit and change your title and description but you can appeal.
DMOZ editors: if you stick to their guidelines and choose the right title and description probably they will not change it. They can cut redundant keywords.
The same for about.com editors.
Angiolo - many thanks for your help and time!!
Here are two in-depth pages about just this topic:
Open Directory Project Site Submission Primer [searchengineworld.com] and All I Know About Open Directory Project Submissions [laisha.com]
Thank You, Laisha
Just completed my submission and now its 'hope for the best' - fingers crossed!. The info you pointed me too was very good and the Laisha site has been bookmarked for my future reference.
Am I doomed to obscurity on ODP here ? I have read the submission tips.
I appear to have 2 options as far as categories go -
Computers: Software: Graphics: Image Editing: Paint Shop Pro or
Computers: Software: Graphics: Image Editing: Paint Shop Pro: Tubes
From the submission tips it would appear the the former is preferable to the latter being a higher level category. However, the submission tips clearly state that the name of the site should not be the same as the category and should also not appear in the description.
Any advice from an ODP expert would be most gratefully accepted :-)
>Am I doomed to obscurity on ODP here
Maybe BUT it does not matter.
Only editors search at ODP
It's AOL that counts.
Do the search on AOL
I don't know who wrote the submission primer but the advice on titles and descriptions is questionable. Probably about 1% or less of titles and descriptions submitted to the ODP are hypeless. Less than 1% of titles and descriptions are entered into the directory by editors without change (except in the case of click-thru editors).
The idea that there is a blanket guideline on rejecting sites because the title and description has hype in it is just plain wrong. If I run across a site that has a note that it was deleted or rejected because the title and description had too much hype the editor that deleted it is going to get an email from me about it - that is not a proper reason to reject a site. Sites are accepted or rejected based on there content - not on the submitted titles and descriptions.
Its an ODP editors job to make sure that titles and descriptions conform to the listing guidelines of the directory and properly describe the site. Its not an ODP editors job to reject submissions based on the content of a submitted title and description.
If your site is named PSP Tubes then that is what is going to be used (and should be used) as the title of your site. PSP tubes will probably not appear in the edited description of the site because its the name of the category but that does not hold true for the title of the site. The guidelines say that you put the title of the site for the sites title - they do not say make up some title for the site because the name of the site cannot be the same as the category name or reject a site because the name of the site conflicts with a category name.
I'm an Ex ODP editor, having found myself more and more disillusioned with it and the poor policing, widespread selfish interests of way too many editors, etc, etc.
I know all the criteria of the ODP having read all the guidelines time and again during my years (yes years) as an editor there. Yet still, out of the last 20 submissions I made, all perfectly by the book, according to the guidelines and the category description and guidelines where provided, only 1 of them got listed.
Of the 50 submissions, made over the past 4-5 months, only 6 seem to have been accepted.
In particular, I attempted to list a market research company properly and completely.
I submitted the core business site to the 'global' (i.e. Non-Regional and Non-World sub-cats) Business sub-category.
I submitted the UK site for the UK offices and operations of the business (head office is in Cologne, Germany) to the appropriate Regional UK category.
I submitted the French and Italian offices and operations (own language, regional sites) of the company to the appropriate World subcategories.
The Regional German site (in German) was already listed in an appropriate World subcategory.
Of those legitimate, careful, editor-quality submissions, NOT ONE was accepted and listed.
On that day, I deleted by bookmarks and bookmarklets relating to editing at the ODP.
I still believe the the ODP is an essential submission for any business to make, and that listings there are vital to an all-round seo campaign or web-presence strategy.
However, I also finally believe that the levels of corruption, carelessness and outright crap standards at the grass-roots level of all the smaller categories (leaf-nodes as Spock used to call them) is so plentiful that it makes an ODP submission more akin to rolling a dice than applying for a decent review in more cases than not.
There are senior editors of exceptional standard at the ODP. However, the directory has simply grown and grown and it seems that the numbers of unthinking, self-absorbed, typical AOL-using idiots actually reviewing submissions at the lower level categories is beyond their ability to even monitor anymore, far less control.
Former Editor TheKnight
hmmmm, and that from the nice man who brought us the "Feziwig and Duster" saga elsewhere.
If somebody deletes a site I submit for no good reason they are going to get a book in the editor notes and it will be resubmitted. If someone deletes a submission they better have a good reason and that reason better be stated. If they delete it again they will get another book and it will be resubmitted. I will not sit back and let abuse go, i will do something about it - I simply have too much time on hands :)
I am sorry to hear you quit in disgust Black Knight - I am sure if you would have taken the problem through the proper channels you would have improved the directory. In this case I believe the abuse you were suffering will continue for others until someone is willing to go through those channels to stop it.
>Probably about 1% or less of titles and descriptions submitted to the ODP are hypeless. Less than 1% of titles and descriptions are entered into the directory by editors without change (except in the case of click-thru editors).
Interesting statistics, although my own experience indicates something entirely different. Can I ask where you got them?
While you may be speaking for your categories, Games and Shopping are not at all representative of the directory. I would assume that Shopping in particular has generally more spammy titles than submissions in other categories.
>The idea that there is a blanket guideline on rejecting sites because the title and description has hype in it is just plain wrong.
Although it is true that there is no "blanket guideline," or even an unspoken encouragement abou this, it is absolutely true that many editors do indeed reject sites for those reasons as well as other inane reasons.
Unfortunately, the directory has become so large that these editors are difficult to weed out. When one is pointed out, investigations are indeed done, and quite often these editors are removed. However, without the help of non-ODP editors blowing the whistle, as it were, they go on editing however they want.
>There are senior editors of exceptional standard at the ODP. However, the directory has simply grown and grown and it seems that the numbers of unthinking, self-absorbed, typical AOL-using idiots actually reviewing submissions at the lower level categories is beyond their ability to even monitor anymore, far less control.
I'm afraid I tend to agree with this almost entirely.
When the project was new, volunteers edited there for different reasons than they do now. Clearly since it was largely unknown for the first year or more, self-interest was not the major motivator.
When it was in its hayday, the abuse began skyrocketing exponentially.
Now that there are virtually no search engines or directories which rely heavily on ODP data, perhaps this sort of editor will drop out. If not, then at least their abuses won't skew search engines as badly.
>I'm an Ex ODP editor, having found myself more and more disillusioned with it and the poor policing, widespread selfish interests of way too many editors, etc, etc.
I'm sorry to see you've gone, Ammon.
This sentiment is apparently not uncommon at all where "old timers" are concerned, and many who have not actually stopped editing have indeed cut way back on their editing because of it. I myself have gone from approximately 9 hours a day to probably 9 hours a month.
>Of the 50 submissions, made over the past 4-5 months, only 6 seem to have been accepted.
Check your StickyMail.
[ Added ]
>I am sure if you would have taken the problem through the proper channels you would have improved the directory.
I'm sorry, but that's laughable. While it sometimes works, proper channels are too clogged to allow that to be stated with any sincerity.
>>Probably about 1% or less of titles and descriptions submitted to the ODP are hypeless. Less than 1% of titles and descriptions are entered into the directory by editors without change (except in the case of click-thru editors).
Interesting statistics, although my own experience indicates something entirely different. Can I ask where you got them? >>
From my own experience and from what other editors have told me - I have been an editor for about 2 years now.
Yeah, I am fully aware of the irony of it Mike, which is why I'd never have mentioned it in any other forum. I was once one of the strongest proponents of the overall honesty and integrity of the ODP - partly because I knew some of the senior editors somewhat, and found them to be intelligent, honest, forthright people in the main.
I still believe that those same senior editors have that integrity, however, they cannot be everywhere at once, or monitor every edit, and most especially important, many of them only edit in the English language areas of the ODP.
More to the point, they should not *have* to do so. What on earth was the point of continually expanding the 'staff' (paid personnel) numbers if not to help ensure better quality and take more of the strain off of the volunteers. However, in actuality (though no directly causal relationship is implied) as the 'staff' numbers have increased, so has the abuse.
I think to a large extent, expanding the staff, only took up more time of senior editors in trying to argue for sensible rules and guidelines. More staff mostly seemed to result in more (and longer) discussions and debates over guidelines, and of course, more arguments, etc.
It must have been a while since you were an editor Black Knight as staff has decreased - not increased. Decreased substantially.
I have been trying to get a site listed since the beginning of the year. It is a very popular site, but since the category has no editor, my submission requests for the category go unanswered and also my submission requests for general ODP editor help.
>>typical AOL-using idiots<<
You don't have to be an AOL user to be an idiot!
I like AOL...it keeps me in touch with what the average web user is experiencing (keeps my feet on the ground). Beyond that, they have some tremendous resources that go way beyond the typical fluff that most folks ENJOY. I built my first site using AOL Press, a very good (free) wysiwyg html editor supplied by AOL.
BTW, most of the "idiot" correspondence that ends up in my mail box is not from AOL users.
Oh, and another reason I like AOL: They are kicking the pants off of MS in the ISP market.
Laisha says, "When the project was new, volunteers edited there for different reasons than they do now."
This appears to be true in many cases.
Laisha, you and I had that conversation almost two years ago (or more) from a different perspective. I was employed in the security operation at America Online if you remember and we remarked to each other our opinions about the "best kept secret" on the Internet.
This is information I found in another forum.
Below is the proper procedure if you are having problems getting a site listed in ODP:
1. Allow up to 3 weeks before contacting editors after submitting. Some categories are not maintained as regularly as others.
2. After that time, go to the category you submitted your site for. At the bottom of the category, there should be a list showing the current editors of that category. If there are no editors, go up one category level and find the editors there. Continue to go up one level at a time if you still see no listed editors, finding the lowest category possible where an editor is listed.
3. Contact one of the listed editors. When contacting, you should include the following information:
Your name, your site's name, and your site URL
When you submitted the site
Name any other editors you've contacted (if this is not your first contact)
What you submitted as a description
The specific category you submitted to (ex: Business/Employment/Staffing_Services/Specialty_Services )
4. Allow up to one week for a response. Keep in mind that the editor you are contacting is a volunteer, and is not required to be online or editing at any given time. They could possibly be on vacation, having computer problems, etc. - anything.
5. If you receive no response after one week, contact another editor in the category if there is one, or move up one more category level and make contact with a higher level editor. If necessary, continue to do this until you reach the top-level category. With each contact, always give the information asked for in #3 above.
6. . . .
I used this procedure and after 6 weeks, I sent a message to a higher editor who promptly answered my inquiry within the hour.
The editor informed me that there were numerous unreviewed sites in that category and that the submission might sit there for sometime.
The editor added that if the site was not listed in three months, I should write back and she/he would review it.
Just a quickie, I have been trying to submit sites into the ODP for about 8 weeks and I havent had one of them listed :(
None of them are dodgy, one is for fishing, one is for jobs, etc I.E not porn
I have tried to look for categories where this is an editor but most of the categories I want do not have them so I have to submit to the higher level category .
Any ideas why I seem to be wasting my time :(:(:(
any advice appreciated
Submitting to an incorrect (higher) category wastes everyone's time. Editors have to take the time to move it "down" to the correct subcat, adn they may or may not list it at that point. Depends on the editor.
< Submitting to an incorrect (higher) category wastes everyone's time. Editors have to take the time to move it "down"
to the correct subcat, adn they may or may not list it at that point. Depends on the editor. >
You seem to misunderstand me, I have submitted to the appropriate category where there is no editor, and then submitted to the one above where there IS an editor.
I just don't understand, perhaps the editors in the categories I want have sites of their own and do not want the competition :)
any ideas ?
To paraphrase Joel Gray’s character in whatever that movie was that I don’t remember much about… “… eight weeks is very old for a loaf of bread, but very young for a mountain.” There may be a mountain of un-reviewed sites in the category where you and the editors know your site belongs. For that matter the editor may be hanging out here instead of editing. That is allowed in our new contract BTW. :) ODP editors are volunteers. Editors do have real lives too.
I noticed in another thread that you have volunteered to be an editor. Thank you. Go to the ODP and search “ODP Guidelines” look for the “cooled site” the one with the star next to it. Read it, then read it again. There are many answers in that document.
I have submitted several sites to the ODP and have yet to get listed. I believe my sites were very professionally designed, had good content, and were submitted correctly. I sent an email to the editor kindly asking if something was wrong with my sites, and never got a response.
Recently, I built a new site. The content is very strong and straight forward. I would like to have it listed in the ODP, however im not sure what I did wrong in the first place.
I do believe that the ODP is extremely important to get into. However, you have all these crap sites that get in, and yet people who have real sites with real information and content dont get in. There should be some type of feedback process, people should get a response as to why their site was not included.
I want to get in, my site is good, now what?
>I want to get in, my site is good, now what?
Some categories are far more bogged down with unreviewed than others for various reasons. I suggest you follow minnapple's advice in this very thread.
Laisha, I researched what category I should be in and I believe you are the editor for that catergory. I have never tried to submit to your cat. before. I was so happy to find a Cat. that was very relevant and just about spam free.
My site is very informational, secure, and not spamming with affiate links. I think you will like it :)
In that case, see your StickyMail. :)
Reading all this makes me want to go edit! By the way for what it’s worth, I have to edit 99 percent of all my submissions. I’m in the business area of the directory so it’s probably different in other non-business areas.
A few months back I submitted to the Computers: Data Formats: Conversion: Companies category and I was added after about 4-5 weeks. This category does not have an editor
8 weeks ago I submitted to the Computers: Hardware: Storage: Data Recovery category after I was added to the above category. It does have an editor. Our company has core parts of our business in both of these categories.
After 4 weeks I sent an e-mail to the editor basically asking if there were any problems. After 7 weeks I sent the same e-mail to the editor and I CC'd the staff and still no listing or reply.
Could anyone please give me advice on the next steps to take? Would their be an issue with submitting to a second category even though both categories apply directly to our core business?
One final note: I changed my description to directly fit the Data Recovery category.
Thanks for any help.