How to Submit Your Site to Directories
By Kalena Jordan
Unlike submitting to search engines, submitting your
site to directories and niche portals usually involves a
lot more than simply typing in your URL. You often have
to start by researching the various topic categories to
find the most appropriate area to submit to. Then you
generally have to provide some detailed information
about your site, its' content, your company and your
When selecting the most appropriate Directory
category to submit your site to, conduct a search for
your main keyword phrase and view the various related
categories. Study the sites listed within these
categories and choose the category that is the most
relevant to or closely related to your site content.
Some directories like ODP have specific Category
Descriptions you should read before submitting, to
ensure you have chosen the most relevant topic for
Another way to choose your category is to search for
sites belonging to your direct competitors. It is likely
that the category they are listed in will be the most
relevant to your site.
If your site targets or discusses a specific regional
market, you will need to submit to a regional category.
For example, if my site was about rental cars for hire in
Sydney, Australia, I would need to submit it to: this regional Yahoo
and not: this general
Yahoo rental car category
I find it useful to submit a slightly different description
of my client's sites for each directory submission. That
way, I can gauge which descriptions are more effective
in terms of encouraging people to click and also which
directories are providing my clients with the most
traffic. Many directories feed their database results to
other engines and directories, so if I have a description
unique to each directory and I see that description pop
up on other search sites, I know it is the result of that
original directory submission and immediately recognize
the value of that original submission.
Remember that directory editors don't care about your
site's ranking in their search results. If they are
reviewing a site submission that contains an obviously
keyword stuffed title and description, they are unlikely
to find it appealing or beneficial for inclusion in their
database! Always make sure your submission details are
relevant, interesting and accurate. Try to highlight your
site's benefits for the visitor and unique content that
makes it stand out from others in the same category. If
your site sounds just like a cookie-cutter version of
others of the same topic, there is no incentive for the
editor to include it.
Submitting to the Yahoo! Directory
There are a couple of sites where you want to take
extreme care and do advance research when
submitting your site. One of these is the Yahoo!
Directory. The way you submit your site to Yahoo! can
make or break your site's ultimate ranking in the
Directory and if you're not careful, could also cost you
USD 299 for nothing.
With Yahoo!'s huge market share and popularity
worldwide, I believe it's vital that your site is listed in
Yahoo!'s Directory. The best way to get listed quickly
is by paying the fee for Express Submission. Yahoo!
Express is an expedited fee-based site suggestion
service for web sites submitted to the Yahoo!
directory. A member of Yahoo!'s editorial staff will look
at your site, consider your suggestion and respond to
you within 7 business days.
Important: Payment does not guarantee inclusion in the
directory, site placement, or site commentary. It only
guarantees that Yahoo! will respond to your suggestion
within seven business days, by either adding or denying
The secret to obtaining excellent results via your
Yahoo! submission is to choose the most appropriate
category and include a carefully-crafted description
that contains your main keyword phrase/s without
being too verbose. For those of you offering a Yahoo!
submission service to clients, be sure to charge a
generous admin fee for your expertise in researching
the category and writing the description for your
client - a successful Yahoo submission can pay
dividends for your client for years.
Example of a successful site description for
ABC VIP Adventures - offers tailored adventure
travel and vacation packages to New Zealand including
day tours, exotic corporate trips, luxury travel
packages, kite surfing, and extreme sports.
Example of an unsuccessful site description for
ABC Travel - we are the best! We are the only
company to contact for your vacation. Call now!
The latter does not use the actual company name, plus
it contains lots of hype but no keywords and few clues
as to what the site is about. In this case, the Yahoo!
editor would have to visit the site submitted and come
up with their own description and it's doubtful the
edited description will be something the submitter
would be happy with.
Submitting to the Open Directory
Another Directory where submission is critical is the
Open Directory. DMOZ is run entirely by volunteers and
your site submission must be hand-reviewed by one of
these volunteers before it can be considered for
inclusion. DMOZ is extremely under-staffed (I know this
because I'm a DMOZ editor!) and it can take 6 or more
months before your submission is reviewed - you must
be patient. When submitting to DMOZ, make sure you
follow the directory submission guidelines above and
prepare to wait, wait and wait some more.
Procedure to follow for a successful DMOZ Submission:
1) Submit site
2) wait for 3 months
3) follow up email to category
4) wait for 3 months
5) escalation email to category editor above
6) wait for 3 months
7) ask for assistance in the Open Directory
Public Forum (http://resource-zone.com/)
8) wait for 1 month
9) escalation email to DMOZ senior staff & post
to various forums seeking help
Rules of Submission
a) Do it once: Despite the hype, there is NEVER
a need to resubmit to a search engine or directory
unless your site is dropped entirely (which is a very
b) Do it properly: Be very thorough when
submitting, especially to directories. Take the time to
research and locate the most appropriate category for
c) Be brief: Don't waffle on about your site in the
description field. Get to the point and describe your
site in a short sentence or two.
d) Be accurate: Don't try to trick potential visitors by
using vague or misleading descriptions about your
products or services.
e) Be relevant: There is a fine line to tread between
relevance and keyword optimization when creating your
site descriptions for submissions. Try not to cross it by
using descriptions over-stuffed with keywords.
f) Be humble: "Best Web Site in the World!!!!" is not
going to convince anyone and may earn you the wrath
of search engine editors.
g) Be patient: Search engines and directories can take
up to 6 months to index and list your site. Re-
submitting won't help things and could result in your
site being shoved to the bottom of the review pile.
So that wraps up the directory submission process. It
can be time consuming, but taking a little bit of time
and care with your submissions can pay dividends for
your site for years to come.
The above article may be re-published as long as
the content remains unchanged and the following
paragraph is included at the end of the article,
including the URL link:
As well as running her own SEO business, Kalena
Jordan manages and tutors at Search
Engine College, an online training institution
offering instructor-led short courses and downloadable
self-study courses in Search Engine Optimization and
Search Engine Marketing subjects.
Well I don't know about you, but some weeks I feel like
I'm bashing my head against a brick wall. I call
them "Aaaaargghh" weeks. This week has been one of
them and I just have to vent.
I was totally dumbfounded by one of my larger clients
this week. I had provided a paragraph of optimised text
for their graphic-heavy home page and after they
re-launched the site, it was nowhere to be found. The
response when I asked them? Check it:
"Don't worry Kalena, the text at the bottom of this
page is there, it's in a layer that sits under the images
so therefore invisible to the eye but not to search
engines. From a design perspective, the text you
provided just didn't fit in with the site layout."
Aaaarrrrrggghhh!!! Time for some serious spam
After I injested a full block of chocolate and had a little
lie down, I pointed them towards the Google Quality
Guidelines and asked them to remove the hidden text
immediately unless they wanted to risk ranking
penalties or full exclusion from Google.
What I said must've worked though, because within 24
hours I received an email that said : "All requested
changes have now been made". Phew! Crisis
averted. I just hope I don't have too
many "Aaaaargghh" weeks or I'll be working my way
through an entire supermarket aisle of chocolate!
Thanks for listening and I'll try not to vent next time.
Enjoy this issue and remember to visit Search
Engine College to check out our fun online courses
in various search engine marketing subjects. There's
something for everyone, no matter what your
Till next time - wishing you high rankings...
|FAQ1: Pay Per Click Search Engines|
| ||Hi Kalena
I need a list of Pay Per Click engines and
directories. Do you have any experience in this market?
Here are some other PPC resource sites that we
recommend to our students:
Pandia PPC List
Search Engine Guide PPC List
Per Click Search Engines
Hope this helps!
|FAQ2: Sample SEO Contract|
I am looking for a sample SEO contract or some ideas
on how to create a contract while working as a
provider of SEO services. I live in the UK so I would
prefer to have one based on local business law. Do you
have any tips to include to avoid any future disputes?
My contract is a hodge-podge of a few sample
contracts from other SEO providers and the very good
sample SEO contract provided by
Proposal Kit (I wrote a review on that one if you want to learn
more about it).
A couple of important things to remember:
1) If you are going to use a contract template from
another source as your basis, make sure you get a
local legal specialist to give it the once over to ensure
it covers legislation and tax issues in your
State/Country of operation.
2) An important clause I include in my contract is that
it is "subject to (SEO name) advice being followed
during the optimization of your site i.e. all (SEO name)
changes to your site code should be left intact
throughout the duration of the campaign and your site
should be live at all times during the duration of the
campaign to allow search engines to access and re-
index it regularly.
It also helps to make your cost estimate just that - an
estimate only, because often you'll find job costs can
balloon above your original quote if the client's
technology or CMS is hampering your ability to SEO
the site or you need to bring in additional programmers
to nurse it through.
|Exclusive Discount Offer for SEC|
| ||As a valued subscriber of The Search Light, we
are pleased to provide you with an exclusive discount
coupon for redemption towards the course/s of your
choice at Search Engine College.
The coupon will give you a 15% discount on
your next purchase at Search Engine College and is
valid until April 10 2005.
CLICK HERE to receive your coupon!
|FAQ3: Submission to 75,000 Engines|
| ||Hi Kal
Okay what's the deal with programs offering submission
services to 75,000 search engines & directories?
Does it really do anything? I could see if it was
directories then it would be link backs, but just crappy
search engines that dont get traffic? I dont know if I
see the benefit...
What do you think?
The major problems with these type of "submit"
1) There are only really 10 or so crucial engines /
directories that you need your site included in. Five if
you are only worried about market share.
2) The remaining 74,990 engines/ directories they claim
to submit your site to are generally low quality home-
made versions of the Open Directory or else FFA (Free
For All) link factories that will do your link popularity
more harm than good to be associated with. Google
calls these "bad neighbourhoods". You don't want your
site associated with these.
3) As long as your site is linked to from another indexed
site, the crawler engines will find your site without you
even needing to submit it!
4) Often these programs use automated submission
software to submit your site. At best these can be
ignored by engines. At worst they can be a drain on
the engine's server resources.
5) You should retain sole control over what
engines/directories your site is included in. There are
plenty of resources available online about where to find
high quality relevant directories, particularly regionally
specific or niche market directories that you should be
Next time you see an email or site offering submission
to thousands of search engines, be afraid... be very
|SEO for Chinese Web Site|
| ||Hello Kalena
I am an American based web site
designer and I have a client in Hong Kong that needs
help with SEO for a Chinese language site. I've never
done work for other languages. Help!
If they have an English version of their site in place,
that will make your job a lot easier. Start by applying
what you know to their English site and SEO it. Take
your optimized English Title and META tags and have
them translated (by Chinese speakers!) into the
appropriate language, making sure they use the
equivalent jargon and regionalization rather than
straight translation. Apply these to the Chinese version
of the site.
You could take this even further by having their staff
conduct keyword research in Chinese using Google's
keyword sandbox to ensure the Chinese keywords
targeted are as appropriate as the English ones you
The most important thing is to ensure that the Chinese
site is submitted to the most popular Chinese language
search engines and the English site is submitted to the
most popular English language search engines based in
China and Hong Kong. There is a list of the latter
here on my site. Good Luck!