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Is it worth $69. I don't know.
How many new visitors will you get (either directly or indirectly). How many of these new visitors will buy someting on your site. Is the income from these new visitors higher than $69. Only you can answer these questions as only you know how your site is behaving [wich percentage of your visitors do by something and howmuch do they spend]. If you don't know the answers to these questions even spending $1 is to much.
I think they're a pretty good place to start. But if you already have tons of links to your site, then there probably is very little if any value to paying for a directory link.
Completely agree with you, but paying to be on a page that the SEs consider prominent can definitely have some value. Text link ads and #*$! exist because of the value that paying for links can have.
Again though, you should try to keep the big picture in sight. Paying for links should be considered as part of an overall traffic growth plan. Paying $10-$100/mo. for a link on a decent rank page on a directory/site can be of value to jump-starting your site or getting the edge over the competition. But it's definitely not of value for everyone or every situation.
Submit your site to relevant directories such as the Open Directory Project and Yahoo!, as well as to other industry-specific expert sites.
Imo, a directory is only as good as it's editorial policy..