We are moving forward in our Newsletter Marketing series from “Internal Works” section to probably much anticipated “External Works” section, where we will discuss directory submission strategy; link building tactics; newsletter marketing through blogs, forums, newsgroups and classifieds; ezine PPC and affiliate programs; email marketing; social bookmarking; marketing through eBay and Yahoo stores; newsletter branding; video podcasting; product placements; web-advertising; partnerships and so much more. For this week’s topic, let’s start with Directory Submissions:
One of the easiest and quite effective ways to increase your newsletter’s link popularity is to get it listed in directories. Remember: when content is king, links are everything else. Submitting to directories can boost your search engine rankings since Google, Yahoo and other search engines value directories. This is because, in most cases. they are human-edited and contain good quality sites with unique, relevant content.
Currently there are a couple major web directories that you should include in your submissions:
The Open Directory Project. It’s entirely free, and for that reason they sometimes take months to update directory with your entry. Be patient, and do not resubmit your site for at least 6 weeks between submissions.
The Yahoo! Directory rivals the DMOZ as one of the largest human edited directories on the web. The Yahoo Directory has an annual $299 fee for a commercial site, but is still free for non-commercial sites.
Here is the information on how to submit to these directories:
Google directory is powered by DMOZ, so if you get listed in DMOZ you are listed in Google.
There are also a dozen other decent general directories and many niche specific directories.
Directory Submission Tips
When you start your directory submission campaign, generate your directory list carefully. Some directories are just link farms and Google may even be filtering out the links coming from these directories. With that being said, these links may still help improve your Yahoo and MSN rankings.
In directories such as Yahoo, ODP and others, human editors sometimes use meta descriptions as a basis for the directory’s description of your site. So make sure your description meta-tag is there, we have discussed meta-tags here.
Start submitting only when your site is fully functioning, has content, and there is no page that is still under construction.
Create a reciprocal page on your site prior to submissions because many directories require a reciprocal link. This is the exact page where you will be adding their links.
Always read the submission guidelines for each directory to make sure your newsletter-site meets their expectations.
It is perhaps most important to find the right category for your newsletter website when you submit it to directories. This can be done by either browsing through the directory or by searching the keyword that best describes your newsletter. The search results will include some different categories that are relevant to your request. Choose the one that is the most accurate. This is an important step because any submission sent to the wrong category will usually be discarded. Also, if the site is accepted in a certain category, this will be the category that the site will be stuck with for good. It is nearly impossible to change a site’s category once it is in, and this will result in the loss of targeted traffic.
Usually, you only need to submit your home page to the directories rather than any other page on your site. However, in some cases, you can submit other pages too, such as: a blog on your site that you submit to, a blog directory or a separate section of your site.
Submit to each directory you find only once – doing it more than once is already over-submission and can result in banning your site from that directory.
When you submit to directories, make sure that they will give you a permanent direct link to your site from the listing. Redirected links in most cases are not followed by search engine spiders. Also if the directory used ”nofollow” tag (indication for Google bot not to follow the link) the value of submitting to, it doesn’t make much sense in terms of better positioning in search engines.
Types of Directories:
Search for these types of directories and submit your newsletter there:
· General directories:
We have talked about them in the beginning of this article. General directories submission is a must.
· Pay/Bid Directories:
Consider pay-for-inclusion directories too. They are also a good tool for better traffic and higher ranking of your newsletter page. In this case, make sure you are not overpaying (one-time fee of $30 or less is OK) and that it is really worth the money.
· Blog directories:
If your newsletter online version is a blog, submit it to numerous blog directories such as”¦. These are mostly human-edited and therefore are becoming popular with the search engines in terms of rankings.
· Feeds submissions:
If you have things like RSS or Atom in your site, you can also submit those to special ping sites such as”¦.. That’s a very effective tool to drive traffic to your newsletter.
· Local directories:
Sites from Citysearch, Super Pages & Yellow Pages to Google Maps (though that link doesn’t count) provide global, local links if you sign up with them, but in nearly every mid-large metropolitan area, there are literally hundreds of directories and lists of local companies in every possible category. Oftentimes they are free and even when they aren’t, the prices to be listed are fairly inexpensive.
· Niche directories:
What’s your niche? What do you write about in your newsletter? I am sure you’ll find lots of directories dedicated especially to your field, so called relevant/related content directories or simply niche directories. You need to make sure your newsletter website is listed there. These directories will give a very high-quality traffic, tied to those interested in the subject of your newsletter.
· Article directories:
Submit some of the articles you write to article directories such as”¦. Try to find a very specific category/niche for your articles. Links in articles are way better than just simple links. However, there is always a risk that some newbie webmasters may post your article on their sites and thus create a duplicate content of your article on the web. That’s why I strongly suggest you not to post the articles you submit to article directories on your own site. Thus you will protect yourself from Google’s duplicate content penalization.
· Newsletter and e-zine directories:
Finally, perhaps the most important group is to submit to newsletter directories and ezine lists such as”¦. That will boost your subscription rate. I am preparing a directory of newsletter directories that will be available for public soon, so stay tuned.
Don’t submit too fast to directories. Keep it slow and natural. Search engines such as Google do not appreciate when links to your site appear too fast and consider that unnatural, which can result in penalizing your site in their index.
Once you have submitted your newsletter, be ready to wait several weeks or even months before they are crawled and indexed. Remember, this is a long and slow process so be patient but eventually you will start to see some great results with your rankings so keep at it. Slow and steady usually wins the race.
Until next time…
Director, Online Marketing
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