How to use relevant and targeted directories for link building


Do you remember phone book?

I know… it’s practically an ancient artifact. But he was useful in his day.

Not only can you close your eyes, open a random page, and blindly point to a number to call (not that I know anything about it), but you can also go back to the spine of the book – to the “yellow pages” – to search for local businesses.

Now, telephone directories are practically obsolete. You search online for the product or service you need, and when you provide your location, you can find a store nearby within minutes.

This is exactly what you did with the phone book, just… without all the paper clippings.

According to Google, 80% of consumers in the United States use search engines to find local businesses:

“Consumers are looking for local information everywhere, on every device, every step of the way in the buying process. “

What does this tell you?


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You want your business to be found online.

Even if you’re not good at SEO, or link building isn’t in your wheelhouse, don’t worry …

There is a web directory for this.

3 benefits of using online directories

Online directories, also known as business directories or business listings, are an easy way for businesses to build links and drive traffic to their site.

Here are three advantages of using an online directory:

1. Targeted and relevant reach

Directories typically list businesses by niche, location, or category and often include reviews.

When someone uses an online directory, they want to locate a business that matches their needs – what they are looking for at that exact moment.

A directory makes it very easy for consumers to cut the noise (marketing).

By listing your business in a directory, you increase the visibility of your site, which also increases the chances of a sale.

How to Use Relevant and Targeted Directories for Link Building

2. Bonds of trust

Improving your site’s SEO and ranking is a nice by-product of listing your business in an online directory. Online directories are reliable sources and are generally high ranking sites themselves.


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Adding your link to an authority site seems like a no-brainer, especially if it means improved visibility and reach, and the possibility of improving the referencing and ranking of sites.

How to Use Relevant and Targeted Directories for Link BuildingHow to Use Relevant and Targeted Directories for Link Building

3. Profitability

Many online directories, such as Bing Places, Yelp, and Foursquare, allow businesses to submit information to their index for free. Some online directories, on the other hand, charge a registration fee.

However, it may be worth adding your business information to a paid directory. After all, reliable, high-authority links are a marketing investment.

How to Use Relevant and Targeted Directories for Link Building

3 ways to find the right directory for your business

There are many types of online directories. For example, you can find general directories, business listings, local listings, and specialty directories.

Choosing which directory – or directories – you want to be listed on isn’t like throwing spaghetti at the wall and seeing what sticks.

As with all other marketing tactics, you need to have a web directory link building strategy.

Here are some things to consider when developing your strategy:

1. Relevance

Relevancy – and reaching your target audience – is crucial to getting the most out of an online directory. Relevancy is also a factor that search engines take into account when crawling sites.

Are you a travel agency in Texas that specializes in road trips within the continental United States?

So don’t add your business to a list of international travel sites.

It’s irrelevant, you won’t reach your target audience, and even if someone clicks on your link, they’ll only be frustrated that you don’t offer international travel services.

If you’re not an international travel company, you don’t want search engines to associate your website with international travel. And yes it can to injure SEO !


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Pick a directory that’s relevant to your niche, and the chances of reaching your target audience and improving your SEO will be much higher.

2. Domain authority

When choosing between online directories, think about domain authority.

It may be more helpful to get an inbound link from a site with high domain authority (but not always – learn more in The Truth About Domain Authority: What Every SEO Needs To Understand).

You can check if you are listing your business with a trusted and established directory by checking domain authority using a tool like Ahrefs, Alexa, or Moz.

The higher the domain authority of a website, the more likely it is to rank on the SERPs. So, aim for the stars.

How to Use Relevant and Targeted Directories for Link Building

3. Find the right features

Some online directories are more detailed than others, and it’s up to you whether you want a simple NAP + W listing (name, address, phone, and web URL) or a listing with photos, reviews, and stories. notes.


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In order to reach your target audience, taking advantage of directories with more features will be worth the extra effort.

Listing your business in a directory with additional features will encourage your customers to provide reviews and ratings as well, which is helpful in building site authority and SEO.

Stay consistent

Whichever online directory you choose, the key is to stay consistent with your information and updates.

If you are listing your business on multiple directories, make sure that every piece of information – down to the smallest detail – is accurate, branded, and consistent across each listing.

Not only is this crucial for the success of your link building strategy, but it is also important for the reputation of your business.

While using web directories can be easily overlooked in favor of other “sexier” marketing trends, listing your business in a relevant online directory is one of the best – and easiest! – things you can do for your business and website.


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Time range: Months 1-3

Results detected: 4-12 months

Average of directories per month: 6


  • Relevant web directory
  • Domain Authority Checker (e.g. Ahrefs, Alexa, Moz)

Advantages of directories:

  • Targeted and relevant reach
  • Inbound links from high authority trusted sites
  • Profitability

Image credits

Featured Image: Paulo Bobita
All screenshots taken by the author


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