Theme-Based Directories & Linking

Short entry today…

Directories are great resources for internet users who want an alternative to search engine results when looking for a list of websites about a particular subject. There are generally two kinds of directories – general directories and theme-based directories.

Some general directories include:

The Open Directory Project
Yahoo Directory

There are thousands and thousands (literally) of general web directories out there. In fact, if you are willing to count link directories those sites that are actively engaging in link exchanges than there are literally tens of millions of such directories. It is my opinion that there are one or two dozen major ones that really carry some weight. By this I mean they are really worthwhile – for two key reasons. The first is their traffic – they have significant traffic and a link in their directory should bring your site some significant traffic as well. The second is that many search engines use these directories as a sort of validation of credibility. They are worth more than just a regular inbound link. They really help to intertwine your site into the real mess that is the world wide web.

However, since there are so many general directories they are often difficult to actually use. I believe theme-based directories are gradually replacing larger, generic directories, as its just plain impossible to sort a few billion web pages into a fast, easy to use drill down structure.

What is a theme based directory? Really any directory that focuses on one topic.

I just recently started a local lawyer and attorney directory to help feed the need for a well-organized directory of quality lawyer and attorney websites. I also have an old project that lists websites of businesses based in Maryland.

Anyhow, theme-based directories offer the ability to really provide more detailed, industry-specific information. They also seem to lend themselves moreso to actual human editing, which generally results in higher-quality results and thus a more useful directory.