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i read forums often and everyone is discussing dmoz, yahoo and couple of big directories. i am wondering why would someone build a directory today when we all know that it is (let's be honest) imposible to compete with dmoz or yahoo and to be more honest i think that no one would really use my directory if i build one.
my questions are:
(1) if i (or you) build such a classic directory today, how would you make it profitable?
(2) how would you drive traffic there? it seems that everyone submits to dmoz and we dont bother with anything else.
i appreciate your thoughts...
[edited by: skibum at 2:40 am (utc) on Oct. 17, 2004]
[edit reason] ULR removed [/edit]
Because it is easy to do.
>how would you make it profitable
Paid inclusion, adsense etc etc
>how would you drive traffic there?
read this forum and SEO it all the way!
>it seems that everyone submits to dmoz and we dont bother with anything else.
Not true, many many webmasters will submit to every place they can.
Every site can not rank highly in the SE's. A directory that ranks highly for a particular keyword set cna serve to help those with relatively unranked sites to get some exposure at the top of the organic results. If you can prove to potential customers your ability to generate qualified traffic to their sites they will gladly pay you for it.
Iím from the old webmaster school when directories were king and search engines were primitive. It takes a long time to develop a good directory, with a good submission flow at least three years just to get a reasonable database.
Developing good search engine concentration is the key to bringing traffic. When a directory has top ten positions for literally millions of keyword praises it generates traffic.
Competing with the likes of Yahoo and ODP really isnít necessary. With the amount of users on the internet today we really donít have enough high quality directory style search resources.
Directories are springing up like rabbits breeding with no development that are primarily selling links. These directories are totally dependent on the Google page rank system and the value to a webmaster to have an abundance of links. Many will not be around in a year and the vast majority will never make it three years.
I look at developing a directory like raising a child. Time, patience, understanding and of course a great deal of money will have to go into it.
Why should you build one?
So, while you're patiently becoming a dmoz meta, building up your own network of directories on the side will enable you to better promote your websites today, rather than tomorrow.
I've used scripts but I'm hand rolling my newest directory with the goal of ranking it better.
I love directories and will have more to say about them at the Link Development Session at the WebmasterWorld Search Conference [webmasterworld.com] in Vegas.
Profitability is one thing and generating revenue is another. Being profitable is managing your finances properly. Generating revenue from a directory is not too hard.
any ppc engine that will permit you to integrate their listings into your site.
joining affiliate programs and placing their links within your directory.
in house advertising programs
starting an affiliate program.
charging for submissions.
I believe in branding very strongly. Build a strong brand and people will come to your site. Presently I have 40% of my traffic that are typing in or have book marked the site. 31% of which are return traffic. 40% comes from search engiine traffic and 20% from sites that have listed my site on their site.
I hope that I've answered some of your questions. I believe directories will be even more important in the future because as the internet grows we will need a system to categorize sites and directories might just be the answer.
Banners, AdSense, affiliates, fools with more money than sense - all are good ways to monetize even a tiny directory.
Not to forget, I was able to practice my programming by making one of them totally dynamic, and building a nice back end to maintain the thing. So, directories can be fun too.
If you're trying to build a competitor to the Yahoo directory, then don't bother, but if you have a targeted market and a good approach, building a directory is a great idea.