Are Web Directories Still Relevant for SEO in 2019?
Web Directories have been the norm for the world wide web and for search engine optimization for a long time. But are they still relevant in this age of advanced AI Google Updates?
Well, as Head of Web SPAM at Google John Mueller said, “in general, no”. But the key words in that answer are “in general”. That’s the usual answer we get from John and, as much as we’d like to say we will dissect it, the truth is that we can only be speculating and interpreting things based on own knowledge and experience.
Let’s jump to it and find out whether web directories are still useful for SEO in 2019.
- What Are Web Directories Really?
- Do Web Directories Still Work for SEO in 2019?
- Should You Disavow Directory Links?
What Are Web Directories Really?
In order to better understand why directories work or not in 2019 we have to create a background for them. Like an introduction.
Most people probably think of directories as just sites that list other sites. While that’s true, the reality is that they’re much more.
Before modern search engines, such as Google, web directories were THE INTERNET.
Why Web Directories Were Created
In the very early days of the internet, only a few people had websites. Internet connections were uncommon and there wasn’t much profit to be made out of it. Still, different websites emerged, in different niches.
However, you had to actually remember the domain names in order to access those websites, as there was no Google.
But, as the internet grew, more websites started showing up. Soon enough, people couldn’t remember all those names. But some clever guys from Yahoo! had the brilliant idea to store the best website into something they called a web directory.
At first, only a few websites were listed, the most ‘popular’ ones or the ones that they thought were worthy of being listed. This way, you would only have to remember one website (Yahoo!) if you wanted to find all the other good sites.
At first, the sites were listed alphabetically but, as the number grew, they started getting listed under categories and subcategories. This way it was easier for users to find what they needed.
Web directories made money out of selling advertising space or boosting certain results in exchange for a fee.
Why Web Directories Died
Unfortunately, when the number of sites started getting way too high, people soon realized it wasn’t so convenient to browse through all those categories. It would take too much time and, ultimately, the best results were mixed up with the less good ones.
This is how search engines appeared. It was by far more convenient to …read more
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