phpLD was started in 2005 and we've witnessed lots of developments in the directory industry even in this short time. For many years, general directories we very popular and millions of dollars changed hands as people paid to have their sites listed in general directories. In late 2012, phpLD was introduced and made it even easier to make a city directory with better Business style listings, search by location, and better map features.
Profitable Tip: NAP Citations (Name Address Phone) are huge in optimization for local listings that appear in places like Google Maps, and directory owners can do very well offering business listing services in their directory. Consistency of NAP Citations across many places helps a local listing rank, so look for more submissions for business listings by making sure people know your directory can help!
Of late, local directories have been golden for phpLD users. We've spoken to several users that have reported $1000+ per month from their local directories, and we know of a couple that are on track to have $100,000+ in 2010. Unfortunately, out of respect for people's businesses we can't talk specifically about the sites producing this revenue, but we can give you some specific examples of some of the things people are doing.
10 Ideas to help you kick start your city directory!
- Start by making a great directory of your city or locality. Create the common categories that would be helpful to people. Often there are "best of" issues of local newspapers or magazines that can help you identify some of the more important businesses in your area.
- Make sure your business listing pages are worthwhile to the advertiser with a nice review, pictures, a map, a Facebook like button, and anything else you feel will make the listing shine. For example, allow your businesses to submit articles to your directory and show them on the link detail page. The possibilities are limitless.
- Once you have some great examples of business listings, and a design and structure to your site, start planning for how you can get in the community and selling ad spaces and business listing. You may want to create some flyers or business cards and start giving them to people that you know.
- Next, get out into the community and start selling. Everywhere you go find a way to get something out of each client. Offer them a free trial. Get them to let you offer a coupon on your site for their business.
- Exchange services - I know one person gets free maid service in exchange for a listing. Get vouchers for a free dinner. Then use them to take out other clients and sell them on your services at dinner.
- Sponsor an event and get prizes from business owners to give away. Make sure people have to visit your site to claim their prize
- Get businesses to allow you to give away coupons that are only available on your site. Coupons are really hot these days with the cooling economy.
- As your site grows it will become easier to sell listings for a premium. We are aware of a number of local directory site owners now that sell listings for $100 or more per year.
- Above all, make sure you become a service to your community and the businesses you serve. Become a salesman not just for your site, but for the people you now represent.
- Use Google maps to give people another way to see the listings on your site. Some people are more visual, and this can help increase the click through rate on your site. Here is a video about importing business listings and displaying them on Google Maps.
There are some WONDERFUL opportunities for local business directories, and we just wanted to give you some ideas, and hope you will harness the power of phpLD to build your business!
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