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Directory Submissions - How to Submit to the Open Directory

In This Section
  What is the Open Directory
  How to submit to the ODP
  Become a volunteer editor

What is the ODP?: The Open Directory is currently the largest online directory, surpassing Yahoo in size and distribution. As it is free both to submit to the ODP and to use the directory's data on your own site it has become very popular and widely used.

Google's directory is just the Open Directory with Google's label. AOL, Lycos.com and hundreds of other large, medium and small sites also use the Open Directory's data as their own directory, in their search results, or both. The ODP also has the widest global reach in that it has mini regional directories in over 60 languages besides English. This means that even though few people know of or use www.dmoz.org itself a large portion of the online community are accessing the ODP through its partner sites. So a listing is very, very important.

Submit Your Site: So how do you submit to the Open Directory? Submitting is free but that doesn't mean you're guaranteed a listing. Like Yahoo, the ODP is a human edited directory. Unlike Yahoo who has paid editors, the ODP editors are all volunteers who are responsible for certain categories and review sites in their spare time. This means that although the site may be reviewed right away, chances are you may have to wait some time (up to 6 months or longer).

Before submitting to the ODP make sure you read their submission guidelines very carefully and be precise when choosing a category. Use the same title and description rules you did for Yahoo: title = company/site name; description = 20-25 word acurate description of company/site with no marketing hype. If after three weeks your site hasn't appeared you can submit again. If another three weeks doesn't make it appear then you can email the category editor. If there isn't one go up the category tree until you find one. Be VERY polite when you email. Remember, they are volunteer editors and they don't have to list your site.

Become an ODP Editor: I edit the ODP and I think every serious SEO / SEM expert should join up - not to get their sites listed but to get an insider's view of how it works. You need not invest a huge amont of time, choose a small category and be pro-active about building it up, then get it checked. What you will learn about the ODP's guildelines when top editors review your category will be very helpful in future submissions to the ODP, Yahoo and any other directory. Or if you don't want to bother with the ODP, sign up to edit Zeal.

Danny Sullivan on submitting to directories
Open Directory Forum on SEForums
Open Directory Public Forum

NEXT Step: Submit Your Site to Looksmart (maybe)

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