The Demise of Link Directories
You often hear how link and article directories are dead, and by and large this is true for general link directory websites with the exception of dmoz.org, botw.org and a few others. For a historic overview and opinions, you can check these articles from websites that regularly write about search engine optimization and the industry:
Testing Waters With Niche Link Directories
While it is clear that most kinds of websites that primarily function as link catalogs are going downhill, the matter is not completely decided on niche websites that also have strong authority content of which a part is a selective link catalog of vendors and/or service providers. This is why we are currently testing out the concept with a Danish website http://nemvinduespudsning.dk – it features the following characteristics that differentiates is from other websites of its kind:
- Articles on do it yourself window washing and equipment.
- A local catalog of window washers in Denmark organized by city. For examples, see the city pages for Aarhus and Skanderborg.
- All articles and listings are intertwined with local references and information. The city pages contain local information with regards to window washing as well as local listings of service providers.
- All submissions are manually reviewed, so only websites from real service providers are accepted.
Tip: Having such a website is also a great way for web developers and search marketers to start interaction with a wide range of business owners.
How to Apply These Concepts
While the concepts described above works well for authority content and link catalog websites, they could also be applied to many service providers that target many cities in an area, e.g. a small state or country.
Building local pages with information not found elsewhere that is relevant for searchers can be the factor that gives the final push up in search rankings. Of course, some niches already have plenty of local competition doing this combined with effective link building, but for those that do not, this can be a very cost effective SEO strategy that many websites owners even can do themselves.
2016 September Update
With the experiment being somewhat successful in grabbing many long tail searches, a sibling website http://nemrengoering.dk (easy cleaning) was created since many small businesses in this field offer many related services – hence the catalog and business model for lead generation, ads etc. could be shared.
A variant of the concept was also recently launched with http://nembetting.dk (easy betting) – the goal being to test the concept against one of the more competitive niches in the search engine optimization and marketing world. Essentially the providers in the catalog are organized through sports and offers with some unique features as well. In essence, its model is very close to what has been described for the other websites. A later update will let readers now if this was successful or not 🙂