An online business directory website provides a listing of information about businesses belonging to different niche or categories. Businesses can be categorized on the basis of niche, location, size or activity. All the information is compiled with the help of an automated online search software. The information in the directory can vary between business name, address, telephone numbers, number of employees and the type of service or products the business provides.
You can also include a section in your directory site for reviews, comments and feedback from your clients.
Previously business directories used to be in printed format but with the arrival of internet, it has been upgraded to websites. Here are some Easy steps to Start Online Directory Business
Online Directory and its Value for Users
The value of online directory is created by encouraging interaction and exchange of information between the producers and the consumers.
The value of an online directory lies in the richness of information and the listing of contents about different businesses. The visitors use the website to gain information of directories.
Making Money from Online Directory Business
The monetization method for any service is based on its value. You will have to charge your customers based on the value your services create for them. The information your business provide has to satisfy curiosity of the customers. The businesses and organizations will pay a monthly fee to you for putting up their webpage in your site.
This will help them to benefit from your traffic and search engine positioning. The clients will ask you to represent their business in your online directory. You can collect membership fees from listing owners, it can annual or monthly. You should allow the listing owners to access your directory for a predetermined period of time. Membership fee will reduce the spammers and make the listing owners act in seriously.
This helps you to control the quality of listing. You should keep membership fees for high quality listings only, otherwise it should be convenient and easy for visitors to join your directory site and this helps you to build a solid traffic for the site. There should be a balance between listing owners and site visitors.
Determine Your Niche
You have to narrow down your focus on a niche and specialize on it. In order to achieve success, you have to become the leader in that niche. It depends on the amount of information you have about different businesses like real estate, cars, food. At the beginning create a directory that covers only your city or state.
In the subsequent stages of the business you can expand to other parts of your country and cover a variety of businesses. It is better to focus on a few types businesses as this will help you to compile the information properly instead of providing scattered information about multiple niches of business. You have to research the market and find out the areas of interest for the people living in your locality, state or country.
If you live in a place which is famous as a tourist spot then you can take tourism as your niche. Your niche should be based on your target groups. Your business should be built based on the need for it. You need to keep in mind that your directory should not be based on what you like rather your niche should be determined on what people are searching more online.
You can visit other directory websites to know what is popular. There are some paid services that helps you to know the number of people searching for specific keywords.
Domain and Hosting
Next you need to buy a domain that is business oriented and build a professional website. Visitors should be able to surf through your website in a hassle free way. People should be able to visit your website in mobiles and tablets. The website should have a secured payment channel and a section dedicated to feedbacks.
Feedback will help you to know where you are lagging behind in exchanging information and if there is a need of changing your niche in accordance with the demands of the customers.
You have to customize your directory from time to time, you can do this yourself if you are experienced but if you come from a non-technical background then you have to hire freelance developers. You have to develop a theme based on the specific niche.
You can try out the demo version of the themes to experience it yourself before using. You need to keep on updating the informative content in your directory and notify the customers about the new updates.
You need to advertise your directory and make it visible to the customers. You can advertise it in social media platforms to reach out to a larger audience. Your business model has to offer spaces for advertisements.
You can advertise by using online text ads and video ads. You have to draw sufficient traffic to your website through advertisements.
Hence online directory business has become a popular niche in recent times. Numerous businesses are cropping up daily that caters to the varied demands of people. It becomes important to maintain a list of the businesses for the convenience of the customers as well as the owners. The customers like to gain more information about a particular type of business, its location, quality of services, size, etc. The directory sites act as a treasure house of information for interested customers.
Customers can compare the companies selling the same products or services and buy from those that are famous and sell quality products at a standard price.
Directories also help the business owners to make their businesses visible to the public by enlisting their webpages in the site. They want their businesses to come in the limelight and directories provide with this option. It also helps those who are planning to start a business, they can research the competition and plan their business accordingly. You have to streamline your focus on a specific niche and keep on compiling information.
Be careful about the legalities and register for copyrights and patents on your information to avoid theft and fraud.
Directories are very useful for every business. Because through that others knows about our Business. Here is the infographic which covers how to find a number. Read below