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Yes, there are lots of directories, but this means many things - it could mean a bad html design, with broken links, index.html code showing on upload, and just plain nastyness without a care for design, the visitor or advertiser. What you need are pure authority portals - these are superior in every way imaginable and will give valuable links that should serve you well in the long-term.
You will find the top directories are easy to find without much searching, and these are the ones you want. If it takes too much digging to find a niche directory, then you can be pretty sure it fails on most levels to effectively promote itself.
I suggest you start with brands like Reed Business Group, as they have about 45 niche portals to their name and are well established - the only downside to this is they charge quite hefty fees, but saying that it may be worth the targeted traffic they will send.
Looksmart also have many portals to their name and again, check out the charges. Other than these 2, there are few that can match the traffic they send.
You could opt for many hours of searching for that nugget, but I doubt you will find these incredible directories everyone talks about, but if you do, please remember me and send me a copy of the list!
[edited by: Helpinghand at 3:14 am (utc) on June 30, 2007]
Many niches have very high quality free directories, assembled with love and affection, and kept right up to date; others have just some sad portal set up by a B list site who just want a few adsense dollars. Some (eg real estate, travel), you'll find thousands of cr*p directories and you'll be amazingly lucky to find a single quality one.
Most are somewhere in between. But a specialised, quality niche directory will do what virtually no general directory will ever do - bring you direct referrals in good numbers.
You may be unlucky - but the search is well worth doing. And when you have done that, also search (if relevant) for local directories.
Ok, go to dmoz, and search the directories there first. I did this myself the other day, as was after specialist directories in my area, but out of the 3 I found my findings were:
-- And you will find a lot of this misinformation.....
Now let's get serious and move away from all this hundreds of fantastic directories chat, as it wastes time and does little good (as Quadrille kindly pointed out). On searching the dmoz in a sub area to mine, I found 4 directories that were kind of related, but not, I repeat with conviction - not good links for me, and thus refused to list with them on that criteria alone.
So out of the 4, maybe only 1 will be good for a link, and thus NOT the hundreds of links that many webmasters promise lol. There are not tons of these niche directories, only a couple at most. My point and theory is people try and force you to spend time chasing non-existent websites, and keep you from running your business. This way they can get ahead of you in the link building stakes.
Don't listen to it and be sensible in your promotional efforts. This is not about going after any old directory link, you need the targeted ones, directories that are authorities and these are tough to track down, they really are, because they don't promote. They are good, but just not interested in promotion for whatever reason.
So it would be better if folks here can tell others where these directories are instead of "Oh do a search at Google". More helpful yes..... Ahh, but we aren't allowed to post urls - difficult.
Interesting threads have their place, but people want to know the location of these super duper directories and sites etc - and will lose interest when they don't find what they are looking for. Might even never come back.
Maybe there's a way around this huge problem.
We're talking about niche directories here; we don't know which industry he's in (or the other readers of this thread).
It's a fact that some of the best niche directories simply won't be found in 'directories of directories', because their owners simply have no need to list them - and maybe no desire to have the thousands of spammy non-relevant submissions that follows a liting in a major directory.
By all means search ODP and a few other likely places. But for niche stuff, almost by definition ... you gotta search. Saving that time may mean missing the best.
Some time spent with Google is a very sound investment. You'll thank me later ;)