Online Business Directories

Online Advertising has become a major marketing force for new and established businesses alike, offering quick exposure, the chance to speed up a web presence and means to effectively track a marketing budget.

There are a whole host of Online Directories available to a business owner or decision maker, especially here in the UK. Deciding on where and who to advertise with, will depend on several factors.

Budget:

Every companies budget is different, the smaller or start up business will be looking to get the most effective spend. Do you spend it all in one go with a market leader, or try a scatter gun approach listing with multiple Business Directories?

Target Audience:

What services or products do you provide? Are you in a niche market, or limited to a particular area? This will narrow down the options available to you. Do you have a popular and well known local area business directory, or are you looking for national exposure? Maybe both!

Expected return On Investment:

What are your realistic expectations? We have all been promised the earth in one shape or form, but what do you need to gauge this piece of marketing a success? How many customers would you need to justify the cost of signing up with a business directory? Too many smaller, and even larger businesses get swept up in the marketing trap.

Can you categorically say which of your campaigns were successful. Do you have complete control over your marketing spend? Unless you’re a large company on a brand building crusade, marketing is simply a tool to generate more business. If your marketing spend isn’t generating a higher return in sales or services, then why are you wasting the money?

Branding:

This can be a decider for a lot of people. Who are you familiar with? Whose brand do you recognise. Positive branding is the holy grail for most companies, people associate your company with value for money, respectability and security.

This can also be a double edged sword, going with a brand leader doesn’t always assure you are going to get the best deal. This then comes down to you having the time to do your own due diligence and research. What’s out there? Then we are back to return on investment.

Recommendations:

What safer way of doing business is there than following a trusted colleague’s recommendation. Of course hardly foolproof, but reduces the risk of the unknown if you can witness someone else’s results.

The importance of the above factors will vary from person to person, but hopefully a lot of this will ring true.

Search Engines

Any business looking for an online advertising presence wants to get listed by all the major search engines. Most search engines have a submission process that site owners can utilize, or some businesses utilize search engine optimization companies that will examine and optimize a website to try and ensure it performs well in search engine rankings.

This is another area where a business directory can help. Directories get regularly indexed by all the major search engines, and links from these directories can enhance a businesses own listing. A good example of this is Google that utilizes PageRank technology. Google will determine a website or web pages importance by a multitude of factors, one of these being the number of relevant links coming in from other websites to yours.

So who should I list with?

Well final preference is down to the individual, and the factors listed above, so below are a good selection of UK Business Directories offering free and paid listings that should suit most budgets.

Free Index Business, Magnet, Thomson Directories, The UK Small Business Directory, Scoot, Matren, The Best Of, Yell, 192.com and of course us!

Business to Business Directory – Ensure the Success of Your Business

Make your business more profitable and visible – To do so, an online presence that is as important as having a physical presence. Internet allows people and goods to market and a local business to business directory as a list of online business services in exciting new ways to advertise. These directories so you actually raise your company profile and increase profits by the number of customers can take advantage.

Online local b2b directory offer local audiences and other information about their products and services company with access to users around the world to help. And people who know your business, you can make more money. Such risks and brand name recognition so you can expect more sales and advertising helps.online versions of Business directory of traditional exhibitions. Your customers and competitors to learn about you when they see your company. It is well known B2B market of potential buyers the information they need prefer the company’s website.

By registering your company with local online Business Directory, you look at other competitor companies, what they are offering to sell. Knowledge is power when it comes to analysis services from other companies. This knowledge, a solid business plan and to ensure the future success of your business can work. Thus, while you strengthen your business lifeline is your homework.

By using online business directories is a great option for companies and groups that are looking to save money. After all, inexpensive and sometimes free posting to these online local b2b directories is a great way to reach people in an affordable manner. It will help you in saving money again notice how you spend your money.

If you are involved in online b2b directory, you meet and greet other same business people involved in the industry. Thus, you can make your business network more strong and powerful and you can also take advice to such same business oriented peoples to come out from any business problem.

Tips on How to Monetize an Online Business Directory

There is more to establishing an online business directory than just improving your search engine rankings. When implemented properly, you can actually generate a substantial income. There are a number of tools you can use to effectively monetize your directory. Using the methods listed below, you can create an effective and profitable online business directory.

1. Join Affiliate Programs: Affiliate Programs, also known as Associate Programs, are programs where one online merchant will pay other websites a commission fee to direct traffic to their website. The websites will post links to that merchants sites and will paid according to a particular agreement, such as if someone clicks on the link to the site and makes a purchase of a product or service. Links can be in the form of banners and text links. An affiliate program is an excellent way to bring in money. It will not cost you anything to join and the affiliate code is a matter of copy and pasting the merchant’s code. For instance, if your directory is a business directory,

2. Costs-Per-Click (CPC) is an effective advertising tool that can be a money generator. Google AdSense is an example of a very popular CPC. All that you have to do is sign up with a network such as Google AdSense and paste some code on your directory page. The network will then serve text or images ads that are relevant to your directory pages, and you will earn a certain amount of money for every click. How much you make depends on where you place the Ads on your page, how the Ads relate to the content of your pages, and the number of people clicking through. Amazon.com has a popular CPC program. As well, other popular programs are Yahoo! Publisher Network (YPN), Chitika, BidVertiser, and Clicksor.

3. CPM (Cost-Per-Mille) Advertising Networks: These networks are another method of generating income in your online business directory. They operate much like Pay-Per-Click except the ads displayed on the site will generate the income. CPM refers to the cost for 1,000 impressions. You can receive as low as $0.10 and as much as $10 per 1,000 impressions. Popular CPM networks include: Right Media, Casale Media, Value Click, Advertising.com, Burst Media, and Tribal Fusion.

4. Sell Advertising Space: You can also sell your own advertising space in your business directory. Generally, people will sell text ads and banner ad formats. The most popular banner formats on the web are the 728*90 leader board, the 120*600 skyscraper, 125*125 button, and the 300*250 rectangle. This is an effective and non intrusive method of using ads to generate income.

5. Paid Polls and Surveys: There are companies that will compensate people to run small polls and surveys on their web pages. You just have to sign up with the company and select the type of surveys and polls you want to include on your directory pages.

There are many ways to effectively monetize your online business directory. The methods you choose should be relevant to your directory in order to maximize your income potential.

How to Increase Traffic to Your Business Directory Using Pre-Population

The main purposes of a business directly online is to get people using it (ie. generate traffic) to find the businesses that they are looking for. This holds true whether you offer a free listing directory and are looking to make money via advertising and it also holds true if you offer paid upgrade packages.

To word it bluntly, what business in their right mind would bother to upgrade to one of your packages if your directory is only getting a few hits a day.

One of the best ways to get traffic to your directory is by pre-populating your directory with businesses.

What is pre-population?

The basic idea behind pre-population is that you (the directory administrator) will hand-enter businesses into your directory rather than wait around for them to find you.

How to pre-populate your business directory:

  1. Be sure that your business directory software is installed on your website, and you have been through the administration panel to create your categories and listing packages.
  2. Search the internet and make a list of businesses that you plan to include in your directory.
  3. As you go through each business, add their email address to a mailing list for future use.
  4. Hand enter each business into your directory.
  5. Send out a mass email to each of the businesses congratulating them on being added to your business directory.
  6. If you plan to offer paid upgrade packages in your business directory, let the businesses know that they will need to go to the directory and register to gain access to their business listing. Once they have an account they can then make any modifications and upgrades to their listing package.

Now, you can begin marketing and advertising a pre-populated directory and chances are more people will use it since it has the look and feel of a directory that is up and running.

Tips to Promote Your Online Business Directory

The success of any business depends in a large part on how well you promote the business. This is also true for online business directories. One should set at least an hour a day actively promoting their online business directory.

The following is a list of tips to promoting your online business directory:

1. Press Releases: Submitting online press releases is a great way to raise awareness of your online business directory. There are a number of free online press release websites one can use. When submitting a press release, make sure you pick business categories and highlight what your directory can do for a business.

2. Online Promotion: Posting messages on online business forums and business bulletin boards is a great way to target and attain businesses. Make sure your signature includes your business directory URL. As well, make sure messages highlight your professionalism and that your directory is a valuable resource for businesses to promote their websites and products and services. Check the forum to see how much traffic they are receiving.

3. Tap into Local Businesses: If you live in an area where there are a lot of businesses that have their own websites, visit them in person, or send out brochures highlighting the advantages of posting their business site on your directory, including how people can type in the ZIP Code to find local businesses. As well, include your business card.

4. Free Online Classified Ads: Posting to online free classified Ads is a great way to promote your directory. Make sure you post your ad in the business section.

5. Write Articles and Post to Articles Directories: Write business articles and post them to online article sites. Your articles should be directly related to business and business directories that includes the benefits of posting to online business directories. These sites are free and are a great advertising tool. Make sure you include a short bio with the link to your online business directory.

6. Email Campaigns: Send out emails to businesses advertising your business directory. There are many sites that can help you implement a strong email advertising campaign. Make sure you do not spam a business. One e mail in a month is good.

7. Use social networks: Social networks have become a very powerful advertising tool. Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace, are a great way to get the word out about your directory. Be active and acquire friends. You can promote your directory link on your profile side of the page.

8. Publish YouTube Videos: YouTube is popular with enormous traffic daily. Make short videos about business and business promotion. Make sure the link to your directory is easy to see. You can promote your business directory on your profile page.

9. Create a Business Blog: Start a business Blog about all aspects of business promotion. Make sure you have quality content and provide a link to your online business directory.

Creating an online business directory is a great way to boost your main website’s search engine ranking, attract more visitors to your site, and generate income. It is important to remember that when creating an online business directory, you have to utilize promotional tools in order to attract businesses to post their links.