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Claiming Directory Listings - Best Practices


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9 replies to this topic

#1 JayMcDonald

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Posted 09 November 2015 - 12:29 PM

I am trying to help out a friend, and in doing so I am making my first foray into cleaning up someone's local presence. I noticed that some of the directories (like YellowPages.com) want to verify my claim with a call/text to the listed #. This makes sense, but seems tedious, and delay-causing if I have to coordinate this with my busy and non-tech-savvy friend over a few dozen directories. Is there a cleaner way to do this that's free? On a related note, are there non-free ways that are good and also affordable? 



#2 chrishirst

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Posted 09 November 2015 - 01:19 PM

 

 

 This makes sense, but seems tedious, 

 

Their directory, ... ... Their rules.

 

 

 

 

Is there a cleaner way to do this that's free?

Probably but what are you going to get for nothing??

 

If any idiot can claim a 'listing' without prior or subsequent "proof of ownership" it that something you see as being 'valuable'?



#3 JayMcDonald

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Posted 09 November 2015 - 02:56 PM

I'm trying to help a friend who needs some assistance, and getting him to send me everything I needed to transfer his hosting and domain was like pulling teeth. I was just figuring that if people go out and claim dozens of these directory listings at a whack, on a regular basis, then there might be some alternate method I was unaware of. Something that would not require the client's coordinated forwarding of a barrage of emails, texts and phonecalls across 3 dozen or more claim processes.

 

Your reply seems defensive. Did I say something insulting?



#4 chrishirst

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Posted 10 November 2015 - 07:16 AM

Your reply seems defensive. Did I say something insulting?


Nope and why defensive??
 

I was just figuring that if people go out and claim dozens of these directory listings at a whack,

 
I can't speak for "people", but anyone in Internet marketing should not, or would not be 'claiming dozens of listings"  as there are probably not more than a handful of directories in any given market sector that are worth the effort. The rest are just junk websites thrown up as "SEO directories" or "business directories" by people thinking that they will become 'cash cows' when thousands of 'people' clamour for a "Premium listing" at a "modest fee".
 
I can't recall a time (in this century at least) where I personally used a "directory" to locate a website in a particular market place, I have probably used "Yell" (yell.co.uk) or 192.com a couple of times a year to find a telephone number of a business I knew about but haven't deemed my quest "important enough" to pay the directory enquiries charge. Prior to 1993/1996 and the rise of Alta Vista, HotBot, Exite, WebCrawler and of course Google, there was no other way to find websites, and it would seem that very few of the "SEO 'pundits'" have actually got over the idea that "directory submission" is a vital, maybe even essential part of "optimising" and/or marketing. Directory submission has almost become a religious ceremony with them, the "Cargo cult" process of SEO.

 

Just like ALL religions the "reasons" for this 'ceremony' or these practises, never actually existed or have long ago ceased to exist and only the myth and the ceremony remains.



#5 torka

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Posted 10 November 2015 - 10:27 AM

Unfortunately, since all these directories are (essentially) competitors with each other, they have very little incentive to make "mass registration" any easier. They want to collect as much information from you (or the business owner) as possible so they can market to the business owner -- so naturally they're going to set up all sorts of hoops through which they expect you to jump to receive the "valuable" listing in their directory.

 

As Chris, says, most of them aren't worth the electrons they're displayed on. :) I mean, srsly, the search engines don't give them a lot of weight (probably none, truth be told) and human beings don't use them to find businesses... so what are they good for? If there are any that you've heard people talking about recently, or that you know for a fact people are using, those would possibly be OK to pursue, but otherwise I don't think you're going to get sufficient value from the listing to justify anyone's investment of time and effort.

 

If your friend is registered for Google's and Bing's local listings, that is probably all they need. Not that either of them will necessarily be "easy" -- you're still going to have to verify ownership -- but verifying for two is a lot easier than for "dozens."

 

--Torka :oldfogey:



#6 JayMcDonald

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Posted 12 November 2015 - 11:27 AM

Hmm. I had always heard that the listings were an important factor that Google takes into account - that it's part of getting NAP squared away.



#7 chrishirst

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Posted 12 November 2015 - 01:52 PM

Hmm. I had always heard that the listings were an important factor that Google takes into account - that it's part of getting NAP squared away.

 

The only people who ever claimed that was the case were the directory operators themselves.



#8 JayMcDonald

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Posted 12 November 2015 - 03:10 PM

Moz.com talks about it. I had thought they were a credible source, but maybe not.



#9 torka

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Posted 13 November 2015 - 02:34 PM

About a thousand years ago, Yahoo had their own directory and Google paid a lot of attention to DMOZ listings (even going so far as to sometimes use DMOZ titles and descriptions in place of the meta information included on the web page itself, unless the site owner explicitly asked them not to).

 

Along about the same time, it was still relatively easy to "game" Google by playing around with links (i.e. "Googlebombing"). And people noticed that when they got listed in various directories, those links would show up in their list of links according to Google.

 

Some people extrapolated from that and inferred that "directory listings are important for SEO."

 

But, as I said, that was about a thousand years ago (give or take), and a few things have changed in the SEO landscape since then. For one, Yahoo Directory is gone. And you don't hear so many people obsessing over getting a DMOZ listing these days. But most importantly, Google has become much more active in identifying (and discounting) links that you can place yourself (i.e. "link building"). They're looking -- as they've always been looking -- for earned editorial links, not those you create yourself. The difference is lately they've gotten a lot better at identifying the ones you can create on your own with little to no editorial intervention or review... which would include the vast majority of those directories.

 

This is not to say that directory listings are all 100% worthless. For a brand-new site that has no inbound links at all, a reasonably reputable directory link or two can jump-start the indexing process. And, as I mentioned, if there's a niche directory that you know your target audience actually uses (such as an industry buyers' guide), that would be a good place to get listed. Of course you want to be included in the Google and Bing local listings.

 

But wholesale submission to large numbers of general-purpose directories hasn't been a "thing" since at least April of 2012, when the first iteration of Penguin came out. (For some of us, it hadn't been a "thing" for a lot longer than that...)

 

--Torka :oldfogey:



#10 chrishirst

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Posted 13 November 2015 - 02:50 PM

Don't get me started on the credibility (or lack thereof) of Mox.com






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