Have you heard of blog directories? To anyone who has been a part of the online-entrepreneur bandwagon long enough to be conversant with SEO techniques, the concept of blog directories may not be unheard of.
For the uninitiated, a blog directory is an online publication on which any blogger can publish content. You might be a freelance writer who likes to express thoughts on a variety of subjects, or an entrepreneur trying to draw attention to your web pages or product range.
Either way, a blog directory is a platform wherein you can post your content as per the rules, and use the same for link-building. This in turn would raise your SEO score, which will translate into better ranking for your website.
As against the costly and time intensive option of setting up your own blog, signing up with a blog directory is effective, swift and feasible. However, it is also one that requires a bit of homework and due diligence.
Using a Blog Directory – Pros and Cons
Before taking the plunge into the world of blog directories, it is advisable to gauge the outcome of the decision. Like all online platforms, blog directories have their pros and cons, and as a potential user you must take cognizance of these prior to signing up.
Assuming that you have identified certain free platforms where you can publish blog posts, the next step entails exploring further as to what might possibly happen. To this effect, outlined as follows is the impact which is likely to ensue once you start publishing in a blog directory –
- With each blog that you publish, the directory will provide an id which you can embed on your landing/product page as an outbound link;
- Because blog directories are prone to receive more online traffic as compared to individual websites, chances of connecting with your target audience is higher;
- In the event of the blog directory being an authority site, your published posts will be intercepted by search engines, which in turn would translate into improved online visibility for you;
- Since posts on such platforms are reviewed before being published, every approved blog bears a stamp of credibility that works in your favor;
- Once the directory and the search engines categorize your posts, your web pages would show up prominently in response to any related inquiries;
- Too many no-follow links might appear as spam and cause search engines to lower your website’s rank as a penalty;
- Given the thousands of blog posts that are published on these platforms, visibility might not be as good;
- Sometimes blog directories may not live up to your expectations in terms of boosting your ranking in the search engine results page;
How to Choose a Blog Directory
Choosing a blog directory is a task which is easier said than done, there being several hurdles dotting the path. As the first step, simply type the phrase ‘blog directory’ into the search bar. Undoubtedly there would be a long list of blog directories that would show up, which actually works well for you in terms of options. What does not work well is the unfortunate truth that not all of them are born equal in terms of authenticity and reliability.
Indeed there are blog directories which are classified as being spam by the search engines. Do make it a point to totally steer clear of these, as they will not help you either with ranking or link building. Then there are blog directories that charge a subscription fee for signing as also for publishing your blog posts, and there are others that are totally free. Depending on your budget and preferences, you can identify one which appears to be most suitable and sign up.
At the time of signing up, navigate within the directory and explore the following aspects –
- Page Rank of the blog directory
- Whether it is an authority website
- Niches and topics that are usually published
- Available categories and sub categories
- Rules and regulations for publishing posts
Publishing on blog directories entails providing details pertaining to your submission. Usually these platforms ask for –
- Author’s name – it could be your real name or an alias
- Title of the blog post
- Category and possible subcategories
- Keywords or key-phrases
- A short description or summary of the blog post
- Incorporating keywords/ key-phrases in the body of the content
- Resource box for adding any relevant info or web page link
Also bear in mind that blog directories vary in terms of policies regarding promotion of a specific product/ service, which you must comply with while publishing. Failure to do so will result in your submission being rejected, the entire purpose of link building and off-page SEO standing defeated.
Playing Safe with Blog Directories
Observing certain precautions while figuring out the blog directories is imperative not just for the sake of your online reputation, but also for avoiding any negative impact on your SEO and ranking. Discussed as follows are aspects on which you must exercise caution –
- Make sure that your blog posts are totally free of spam in terms of both content and links;
- Like a book, do not judge a blog directory simply on the basis of its appearance, but on how relevant it is to your niche;
- Reciprocal back-links are a complete no-no and you must steer clear of platforms that support this technique;
- Be suspicious of blog directories that require you to display their banners on your web pages in lieu of publishing your content;
- Always mention the categories and subcategories, and fill in the meta tags to render it easier for the search engines to intercept your posts;
Patience is the key when you begin making submissions to a meticulously selected blog directory, because some amount of time-elapse is inevitable before the traffic flows in. It would be impractical to expect a major change in the volume of traffic from the very first day of the post having been published. However, over a period of time there is bound to be a boost, both in terms of ranking and online visitors.
The reason for online popularity is that blog directories are structured in a way that they appeal to search engines, which implies that whatever is published is likely to garner attention. Degree of exposure provided by these platforms is phenomenal as compared to individual websites, thus proving their veracity in terms of ensuring visibility.
Space out your submissions to the blog directories and you will have acquired a blog feed which is specific to your venture. Added advantages include having evolved into an author, established external links, and ticked off yet another effective and legitimate SEO technique.