This series has focused extensively on the power of directories for link building. So far, we've examined why they are so powerful in part 1 and then we looked at how to evaluate their potential power in part 2. This post will wrap-up the series by providing a short-list of the three most important pitfalls to avoid when making directory submissions (both paid and free).
1.) Avoid Submitting Sites One-by-One
Bulk submissions are amazing for a few reasons. First of all, you can get some awesome discounts and savings by negotiating a lower price per submission, assuming you have around 20+ sites to submit. Secondly, you can also negotiate to have the directory owner manually submit all of your sites for you. Just send them a spreadsheet file with site URL's, titles, descriptions, keywords and suggested categories. This will save you save you lots of time that it would take you to submit all these sites manually one-by-one. Don't ever underestimate the power of bulk when it comes to directory submissions (and link building in general for that matter) in terms of increased efficiency and price savings!
2.) Don't use Same Anchor Text Everytime:
Now this is straightforward, or so it seems. Within SEO and link building, it's crucial to vary your anchor texts. But, with directory submissions the majority of the power derives from the anchor text. Therefore you need to do everything you can to ensure that the anchor texts you get approved are keyword-rich. As you continue with your submissions you obviously need to vary these anchor texts, but remember to always keep them keyword-rich.
One of the easiest ways to get favourable anchor texts approved is by including the keywords within the company name or brand. Now you won't be getting the most ideal anchor text (would be just the keyword(s) itself), but it will be better than the administrator just using your company title or brand by itself. So, instead of just submitting your brand name as the anchor text, you would submit your brand name plus the anchor texts. Here's some examples in a few niches:
Health niche: If your client was "Dr. XYZ's Clinic" and your main keyword is "Hollywood dentist ", you could do "Dr. XYZ Hollywood dentist" or even "Dr. XYZ Hollywood dentist clinic."
Law niche: If you are targeting "personal injury lawyer Calgary" and your client is "X,Y,Z Law" you could do "X,Y,Z personal injury lawyer Calgary" or even "personal injury lawyer Calgary X,Y,Z."
Get the picture? The point here is to make sure you utilize the power of directories by ensuring you submit keyword-rich anchor texts!
3.) Don't go Crazy with Submissions! As with all other link building strategies, you need to be careful and watch the velocity of your link building. Don't go crazy and try to make 1,000+ submissions in a month as you'll probably end up doing more harm than good in terms of rankings. As with all link building strategies you need to be cautious about the rate at which you build links, but especially with directory submissions since it's very tempting to pay an outsourced worker on DP a few bucks to submit to a couple hundred directories.
This last point brings up a couple of other very important factors to consider when making directory submissions:
First, use deep links where possible so that you can target some of your important product pages or sub-pages. Secondly, when making directory submissions, a general rule of thumb is to only pay per approval. I can't stress this point enough; with directory submissions (usually free directories) there are a lot of scammers (with most residing on DigitalPoint) that offer "1000 directory submissions for $5" or some other ridiculously low offer. With SEO and link building: if it's too good to be true, there's usually a reason why= SCAM!
To avoid being duped by one of these scammers make sure you only pay per approval and not just per submission. Remember to keep these points in mind and avoid the three aforementioned pitfalls when submitting to directories! Hope you all enjoyed the series!
I'm a SEO Manager here at SEP and am responsible for overseeing the organic ranking of clients for their major keywords. When I'm not in front of computers my main passions are drumming, hockey and hanging out up north at my cottage in Muskoka.