There are a million and one free business directories and 99% of them provide zero value. However there are a few high quality local Australian business directories that do provide value. Why bother being listed? Improved SEO rankings on Google and traffic from the directory.
Links from directories to increase SEO rankings
Perhaps one of the greatest benefits of listing your business with a directory is the link you receive to your website from your profile page. Broadly speaking, more links equals higher rankings. However not all directories are worth it. A link from each of the directories here is worth it based on two criteria: links are “dofollow” (they pass on link authority) or the directory allows for your business address.
Citations from directories to increase Google Places rankings
Most people with some knowledge of SEO know that links help to improve rankings. But what Google Places listings? One of the main ranking factors for Google Places is something called citations. A citation is when an external website, like a business directory, includes your business’s address and exactly matches the address on your business website. This is Google’s way of establishing trust in your business location.
Get traffic referred by the directory
People browsing through these directories are already looking for a particular business, be it a restaurant or local pet store. Upon landing on your listing, they will not only be receiving relevant, important information about your business, but they will also be enticed to visit your website.
List of Top Australian Business Directories (ordered by domain authority)
1. Yellow Pages Australia
Yellow Pages is globally recognised and is considered the “founding father” of business directories. This is the only one that uses “nofollow” (it provides no link value). However, it does count as a citation for Google Places. Additionally Yellow Pages has partnered with Google and will manage a Google AdWords campaign on your behalf. I don’t know a whole lot about their offering, but it sounds pretty competitive. If anyone has prices or brochures, let me know in the comments.
Truelocal is one of the most popular directories for Australian businesses. They allow visitors to add ratings and reviews to each listing. Their iPhone app broadens the range of customers reached. They also have some premium options worth considering.
3. Hot Frog
Hot Frog provides businesses with free, in-depth listings. You can add coupons or create extended product and service descriptions. Another feature I like is that they send you a monthly email reporting on the number of visitors to your profile and enquiries generated.
4. Start Local
Start Local is a directory that allows businesses to offer coupons on their listing page and visitors to leave feedback. Businesses are also free to upload images and add store hours.
5. Enterprise Search
Enterprise Search offers free and paid listings. Businesses’ website URLs are added to each page.
6. Aussie Web
Aussie Web is a free business directory which also includes convenient driving directions to the listed business.
Local is a reasonably popular directory that includes a map of the business location for each listing.
8. Shop Seek
Shop Seek has both free and paid listings. Each listing is manually approved before it is placed on the website, which maintains quality (a factor Google measures).
Dlook is a large directory with over 1.5 million businesses listed. Visitors are free to leave reviews. The anchor text used in the listing link is flexible which means you can choose what keywords you want to rank for.
10. Web Directory Australia
Web Directory Australia is a simple, straightforward directory that is neat and clean. Each listing includes a thumbnail of the web page, link and short description.
Open Site Explorer Comparative Report
For the SEO people I’ve included a comparative report from Open Site Explorer on the top five of the above directories. Something interest to note is the number of external followed links. Truelocal has the most which suggest it is pretty popular. However strangely Truelocal has no social sharing metrics. Not sure if that is a bug in the report or if Truelocal really don’t have anyone sharing their site on social networks. Seems unlikely.
Do you know of any other quality Australian business directories? Let us know in the comments.