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What kind of software do you need?
Can you build one from scratch yourself?
What are the advantages of cloning an existing directory (Dmoz, etc)?
I'm really just starting to think about it, so any useful pointers would be helpful.
The price point I chose begins at $150/yr. --less than that isn't worth the effort.
I am with you on that figure of over $150. As you say, below that and it is hardly worth the effort.
However get up to $250 and small businesses bridle at the costs of what as you correctly say, they perceive as just a link
It appears to me that once the directory takes off then the billing aspects that you mention, start to become more time consuming than maintaining the site itself. One is dealing with large numbers of clients all paying £150 or whatever.
Use of a secure server and credit card payments does not seem to necessarily effect the admin side of collecting the money :(
I recently took down a directory that allowed vistors to the site to just submit sites into the db and I would review them. I found myself getting so many sites that I couldn't link to. Also, I couldn't think of charging because the market was flooded with directories and I couldn't justify the time involved that took away from paying work. I was alittle over ambitous and I think I could have been more successful with a local directory. I did learn alot about seo and that was very helpful.
From what I learned, I am going to take a stab at this again and try to generate traffic to my business with a local directory.
rcjordan - is there a link to that software you were talking about, it sounds interesting.
I'm a newbie here. I have been reading threads for a while and have a question.
I have started up a small portal to lists businesses in my local area. I know theme links are important, but because all the businesses that I have listed are in different categories, theme links are impossible. What is the next best sort of link if I can't do theme links?
I know theme links are important, but because all the businesses that I have listed are in different categories, theme links are impossible.
You have plenty of opportunities for theming a local business directory.
First, "LocationVille businesses" will be your larger theme, which can then be broken down into subcategories such as "LocationVille real estate", "LocationVille restaurants", "LocationVille lawyers", "LocationVille doctors", etc.
To further support your authority on "LocationVille" you can solicit links from Generally focused local directories that don't have as deep an index of business listings. Local ISPs usually have some kind of directory and could also be strong potential link partners.
As each subcategory becomes definitive enough and builds authority you have the opportunity to then solicit links from other industry specific, but geographically non-specific directories.
For example, you could begin campaigning for links from various legal directories for your now authoratative "LocationVille lawyers" sub category.