Paid vs. Free Directories

The free versus paid debate is one that has hit every aspect of the Internet and Internet technologies at one time or another. There was worry about free web hosting versus paid web hosting, and fret over free e-mail versus paid.
In both cases, whether free or paid is better for you turns out to depend on your specific needs. The same is true of the debate over free versus paid directory listings. Many experts will argue that free directory listings have nothing of value listed in them. This is simply not true.
Some free directories are actually very strict about the listings that are included in their results. Similarly, most users believe that paid directories automatically equate to better-quality sites. Again, not true. Paid directories can be just as lax about the review process as any other directory.
In short, whether you use paid or free directory listings shouldn’t depend on cost alone. What matters when you’re selecting a directory in which to list your site is how relevant the directory is to your site. After relevance, the next consideration is the quality of the sites that are listed in the directory.
If a directory you’ve selected is full of outdated sites, spam sites, or miscategorized sites, it’s clearly not the best place to list your web site. One more element to consider when choosing directories is the audience that’s most likely to use the directory. The company should be able to provide a typical audience profile for you if you can’t tell by looking at the types of sites listed in the directory.
Going back to a principle you’ve heard often, your site should be created with the user in mind. The same is true for listing your site. It will be pointless to list your site in a directory of law-based web sites if your site is about home and family topics and products. Audience first. After that, everything will fall into place.
Creating an SEO strategy for your web site requires more than just choosing what search engines and directories it should appear in. Another consideration is where and how your site should be listed geographically. Geo-targeting is a method of targeting specific traffic for your web site based on the geographical location of your business.